ReCon2 Announces Partnerships with Sourceful and Bright Green Plastics

Recon² Ltd – a not-for-profit start-up company out of the University of Manchester, UK – has partnered with On-Pack Recycling Label (OPRL) Ltd and a cohort of sustainability-focused companies to develop further a patent-pending technology for quantifying recycled content in plastic products and packaging.

Sourceful and Bright Green Plastics are the two latest companies to join the cohort – which also includes ProAmpac, Reckitt, and Kraft Heinz.

Sourceful and Bright Green Plastics will work with Recon² and the University of Manchester to begin trialling the technology on an industrially relevant scale across a number of packaging formats, such as flexibles and bottles. At present, there are no widely available technologies that can analytically determine the recycled content of a plastic item. As new legislation in the EU and UK – such as the UK’s plastic tax – comes into force, testing and assurance methods will become critical.

Recon² incorporates minute quantities of fluorescent “tracer” molecules into the plastic structure. These molecules directly quantify recycled content in plastics with a quick scan directly on the surface, preventing any wasteful additional processing steps and keeping costs low and speed high. Within minutes, the recycled content of any plastic product – thus far proven at lab scale for HDPE, LDPE, PP and PET – can be assessed reliably, independent of processing steps, additives, and product type. The tracer molecule is also FDA and REACH approved and is invisible under ambient lighting.

In conjunction with Recon², OPRL are co-developing a trust mark certification and auditing system to inform customers about the plastics’ post-consumer recyclate (PCR) levels. Recon²’s core technology explored in these pilot trials will underpin this certification, thereby increasing customer confidence in products that claim to meet important sustainability targets.

Recon2’s recent visit to Bright Green to undertake a 1 tonne pilot scale test

Wing Chan, CEO and Co-founder of Sourceful, said “We’re excited to partner with Recon² to make this ground-breaking technology accessible to climate-conscious brands of all sizes. Investing in technologies like this is critical to building transparency and confidence in supply chains.

Jonathan Attwood, Head of Technical at Bright Green stated “This is a fantastic opportunity for the recycled plastics market to utilise a technology that can quantify the amount of PCR within an item of packaging. This will support the transition away from a mass balance approach that can be deceiving, allowing recycling claims to be put to the test. The technology is simple to use and can easily be adopted by recyclers at minimal cost.

Dr. Thomas Bennett, Director at Recon² and Research Fellow at Sustainable Materials Innovation Hub at the University of Manchester, stated, “It’s terrific to partner with Sourceful and Bright Green Plastics to help further our breakthrough recycled content quantification technology and ensure it is fit-for-purpose. We believe our technology is an important step towards achieving a circular economy for plastics use in the UK and beyond.

ReCon² continues to establish partnerships across the recycled plastics industry, including recyclers, brands, and manufacturers, to help advance their world-class material science innovations around improving recycling. To learn more about ReCon²’s recycled content quantification technology email contact@reconsquared.com.

About Sourceful

Sourceful is a packaging platform for climate-conscious brands. Headquartered in Manchester with offices in London, Amsterdam and Shenzhen, the company aims to make supply chains a source of good.

For more information, visit: www.sourceful.com.

About Bright Green Plastics

Bright Green Plastics (an IPL company) is leading the change in plastic recycling. They supply up to 30k tonnes per year of British recycled plastic materials to a range of industries including construction, packaging, automotive and horticulture. Based in Castleford, West Yorkshire, their state-of-the-art plastic recycling plant specialises in PP and HDPE recycling, using a 100% UK-only recycling process including our material recovery facility, wash line and production line with extruders. As part of the IPL group, they are able to perpetuate the circular economy by participating in new for old buy back schemes and rejuvenation projects. Their specialist in-house team of plastic enthusiasts, experts and scientists have over 400 years of combined experience in the plastic recycling industry.

For more information, visit https://brightgreenplastics.com/ or contact jonathan.attwood@iplglobal.com.

For media enquires, email: contact@reconsquared.com

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