Nature should be a role model to all of us, it has developed solutions with virtually unbeatable „intelligence”. Whatever nature has developed is utilized and recovered – there is no such thing as waste. Plastics have become an integral part of our lives. Although they are used in many different ways and on a daily basis, plastic does not enjoy a good reputation. It is made from finite fossil raw materials and is thrown away as packaging after a single use.
However, when the life cycle of our plastic products is modeled on the closed cycle of nature, we conserve resources and recover valuable materials from supposed waste. To close this loop, it is essential that plastics are produced from renewable resources, are properly disposed of after use and are returned to the raw material circle via recycling.
Our contribution to a circular economy
That is why at FKuR we develop innovative plastics that both conserve resources and reduce the environmental impact. Together with our customers, we work on solutions to design plastic products that meet the requirements of the modern circular economy and are suitable for either mechanical or organic recycling:
Plastics from renewable raw materials (so called drop-in bioplastics) can be collected together with petroleum-based plastics via established recycling systems. The recyclate is then returned to the material cycle as often as possible until the products made hereof have ultimately to be used for energy recovery. In this way, energy can be gained from biobased plastics that do not produce any additional harmful CO2 - a closed CO2 cycle, in line with nature's model.
Biodegradable plastics and compostable plastics can be organically recycled. This is particularly efficient when plastic products are contaminated with food. Simple and hygienic handling of biowaste using compostable bags for example, ensures that less valuable waste is disposed of via the residual waste bin. As a result, the amount of biowaste collected separately and thus the amount of valuable compost can be increased. This serves as a fertilizer, for example for those crops that are at the beginning of this cycle.
Eight simple ideas for your sustainable product
Plastics and sustainability – at first sight this sounds like a contradiction in terms, as mountains of waste appear in our mind’s eye. How can we ensure that the principles of a responsible and sustainable circular economy are implemented in the product design? We have six simple ideas for designing recyclable products:
- The product design has to be reconsidered. Products should be reusable and, after their actual life cycle, should be reused as raw material, i.e. be recyclable.
- In order to reduce CO2 emissions, more emphasis has to be placed on the use of renewable raw materials. Biobased plastics such as Green PE or Terralene® have already established themselves in many applications.
- In addition to the use of biobased plastics, the use of recyclates has to be increased. In this context, the combination of recyclates with biobased plastics (as with Terralene® rPP) appears to be a sensible approach to achieve an additional CO2 reduction
- Wherever plastics remain in nature and are not collected after their use, or where collection involves considerable effort, as well as in biowaste collection, the plastic products should be biodegradable in soil or compostable.
- Selection of the appropriate plastic depending on product requirements, local conditions and availability of reasonable disposal routes.
- Help to collect biowaste separately to produce valuable compost. Certified compostable bio-waste bags can make it easier for you to collect the bio-waste.
- In countries with a lack of recycling infrastructure, compostable plastics can make a positive contribution to waste management, as organic recycling is much easier and more cost-efficient to develop.
- There is no such thing as waste! Instead, waste must be perceived as a raw material and recycled.
Our environmental guidelines
FKuR Kunststoff GmbH and FKuR Plastics Corp. are committed to minimizing the environmental impact. Key points of our strategy to achieve this goal are:
- Minimizing waste by evaluating appropriate measures and ensuring the highest possible efficiency
- Minimizing toxic emissions through the selection and efficient use of our vehicle fleet and its energy requirements
- Active promotion of recycling, at FKuR and among our customers and suppliers
- Selection and promotion of a suitable product range that minimizes the environmental impact of production and distribution
- Meeting or exceeding environmental requirements