Lightweight Recycled Content Milk Bottle from Nampak Hits 500 Million Sales

The following article the highlights the success of the UK dairy industry’s use of recycled HDPE plastic in milk jugs.  The technology is commercially available here in the U.S., but there is no desire or incentive for the dairy industry here to include recycled content in our milk jugs.  Milk jugs are the gold standard of “recyclability” and are used extensively as feedstock for recycled HDPE products.  It would be the ultimate in sustainability if the circle could be completed and milk jugs turned back into milk jugs, instead of into detergent or shampoo bottles.  Envision produces EcoPrime, food grade recycled HDPE resin, which would be ideal for use in the production of milk jugs. – Ed.

Reprinted from Resource Efficient Business

Date: Tue, 1 Apr 2014 | Author: Paul Sanderson

Nampak’s Infini milk bottle has sold 500 million units in the UK in supermarkets such as Morrisons, Sainsbury’s, Tesco, Waitrose and Marks & Spencer.

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Since its launch in 2012, the Infini HDPE bottle has saved 34,000 tonnes of carbon and 16,000 tonnes of material.

According to Nampak, the bottle is the strongest and lightest on the British market.

In the last 12 months, Nampak has also pushed up the recycled content in the form of rHDPE in the four pint bottle to 30 per cent and has created a four pint bottle weighing just 32g, representing a 20 per cent saving on the standard bottle.

Nampak Plastics managing director Eric Collins said: “This is a very exciting time for Nampak. For the last six years, the team has been focused on continuously innovating and pushing boundaries where possible with Infini, and this is now showing exceptional tangible results, reducing the carbon footprint of the plastic milk bottle.”

Marks & Spencer commercial and environmental packaging manager Andrew Speck added: “Since Nampak helped us launch the first milk bottles with post-consumer recycled content in 2007 it has continued to deliver innovative packaging solutions for us, most recently this year’s 30 per cent recycled content bottles that we are currently trialling.

“Nampak continues to push the barriers around performance and sustainability, and we look forward to working with it on more ground-breaking innovations into the future.”

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Milk Bottle Recycling Reaches Record Levels in the UK

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From Farmers Guardian, March 3, 2014

This was the claim from plastics company Nampak after a survey conducted by recycling expert Recoup on UK consumer habits.

According to the survey, levels of high-density polyethylene (HDPE) plastic milk bottle recycling increased to an all-time high of 79 per cent in 2013.

Nampak has said plastic milk bottles are now one of the most recycled products in the UK.

The survey estimated 2012 recycling levels saw an estimates 6.9 million pounds of plastic bottles recycled, with 2.1 million pounds believed to be HDPE milk bottles.

Eric Collins, managing director of Nampak Plastics, commented: “We are thrilled with the continued progress being shown in the sector. It is something we feel is incredibly important.

But Steve Morgan, technical manager at Recoup Recycling said more could be done to further increase milk bottle recycling numbers.

Plastic milk bottles in the UK typically contain 35% to 50% recycled HDPE plastic.

The UK Continues to Outpace the US in Use of Recycled Plastics in Milk Jugs

A NORTH-EAST (UK) plastics firm, which makes the UK’s lightest milk bottle, has achieved another first.

Nampak Plastics, in Consett, County Durham, has trialled the world’s first four pint milk bottle made up of about 30 per cent recycled high density polyethylene plastic (HDPE).

The move comes after the firm, which is working with Closed Loop Recycling, created its 32g Infini bottle that is the lightest and strongest bottle of its type in the UK dairy market, and is being sold in Marks and Spencer, Morrisons and Sainsbury’s.

Nampak bosses say that bottle, which won an industry award for sustainability, will save the dairy business about 25,000 tonnes of material every year.

Eric Collins, Nampak managing director, said: “We wanted to increase the amount of recycled HDPE in our bottles to up to 30 per cent by 2015, but have proved this can be reached well ahead of schedule.

“All of our bottles, including the Infini range, currently contain up to 15 per cent, but moving to 30 per cent is a major step forward for the British milk industry.”

Reprinted from the Northern Echo, May 31, 2013
“Nampak, in Consett, County Durham, works on first four pint bottle made of increased recycled material” by Steven Hugill

Embleton Hall Dairies to use new Inifini Milk Bottle Containing Food Grade Recycled HDPE

Editor’s Note: We ran across this article on Packaging Europe’s website, promoting the use of the Infini® milk bottle made with food grade recycled HDPE.  Food grade recycled HDPE is not currently used in milk bottle packaging in North America although FDA approved recycled HDPE is available in North America exclusively from Envision Plastics.  Our food grade recycled HDPE is marketed under the brand name EcoPrime™ and is suitable for packaging a broad range of food products including water, juices, yogurt drinks, coffee, tea, dairy creamers, cereal, nutritionals, syrups, condiments and many other products. 

Embleton Hall Dairies, based in Wingate, County Durham are launching the new 2 litre infini® HDPE recyclable milk bottle following extensive market research. Designed by Nampak Plastics, one of the UK’s leading plastic milk bottle manufacturers, infini® is the innovative next-generation, eco-friendly bottle.Infini-iPad-version1

Infini® has been designed to be lightweighted by up to 25% across the range without compromising strength, resulting in an initial weight reduction of 13% on the standard 2 litre bottle (33g vs 38g). Research has shown customers love its unique design and retailers love the combination of robustness and its environmental credentials.

When placed in the door of a fridge the handle position makes it easier for the consumer to remove the infini® bottle. The bottles are made of HDPE (High Density Polyethylene) and recycled HDPE (rHDPE). Every infini bottle contains up to 15% rHDPE. This recycled content will increase further in the future with a target of up to 30% by 2015.

HDPE plastic milk bottles are 100% recyclable and the consumer can recycle the infini® bottle in exactly the same way as a standard bottle. Also there is a carbon footprint saving over the standard bottle, resulting in approximately 75% of the research panel expressing their preference for the infini® bottle. The bottle achieved international industry recognition, picking up the top award in the ‘Best Dairy Packaging Innovation’ category at the Dairy Innovation Awards 2012, in addition to the World Packaging Organisation 2013 World Star Award.

Commenting on their change to the bottle, Paul Thompson, director of Embleton Hall Dairies said: “The design of milk poly bottles has remained unchanged since we started back in 1984, so we were very interested when Nampak approached us with a new design, in response to growing customer requests for a more environmentally-friendly form of packaging. That it improves bottle strength and reduces leakage rates is a massive bonus, and the results are good for both our customers and the environment”.

Carl Thorley of Nampak who worked with Embleton commented “Infini® is the result of a four year journey that my colleagues undertook in order to reduce the weight and carbon footprint of the standard milk bottle, but without compromising on its strength. It is ‘better by design’ and is playing an important role in helping the British dairy industry to meet its environmental targets and the support we have received from Embleton shows we are meeting the demands of the market.

More info:
http://www.nampak.com