France’s number-one milk brand Lactel announced today that it will begin a trial production of 140,000 milk bottles made of high-density polyethylene (HDPE) derived from advanced recycling technology. Described as a “world first and major step forward for Lactel toward a circular economy,” the project is made possible through the collaborative participation of chemical company Ineos.
Advanced recycling technology converts waste plastic back to its basic molecules, which are then used in Ineos production sites to include recycled contents and replace traditional fossil-based raw materials.
Lactel is the first dairy brand, in collaboration with Ineos, to explore a solution for UHT milk bottles produced with circular polyethylene, derived from post-consumer recycled material.
“This new innovative product will be used in the Montauban [France] production plant for an initial production run. At Lactel we are extremely excited to bring this new environmental innovation to our iconic milk bottles,” said Anne Charles-Pinault, Lactel France General Manager, in a prepared statement.
“Ineos is very pleased to progress this partnership with Lactel. Both companies are committed to sustainability and, via advanced recycling, we are able to supply virgin-quality polymer from recycled plastic that is ideal for even the most demanding food contact applications like milk,” said Xavi Cros, CEO, Ineos Olefins & Polymers Europe/South.
Lactel’s Montauban plant was certified by the Roundtable on Sustainable Biomaterials (RSB) in April 2021. RSB is an international, multi-stakeholder, independent organization that supports the development of the global bio-based and circular economy through sustainability solutions, certification, innovation, and collaborative partnerships. The milk bottles produced under RSB certification are compliant with food-safety regulations and are fully recyclable.