Suntory Holdings Limited has developed “FtoP Direct Recycle Technology” for use in soft drink PET bottle preform*2 production, as part of a joint effort with Kyoei Industry Co., Ltd, SIPA SpA of Italy and EREMA Group GmbH of Austria. Going forward, preforms using this technology will be manufactured at Kyoei Industry Co., Ltd and gradually introduced for part of Suntory Beverage & Food Limited's PET bottle products from the summer of 2018 onward.
SUNTORY: Development of “FtoP Direct Recycle Technology” for use in soft drink PET bottle preform production
- CO2 emissions reduced by approximately 25% (*1)
- Scheduled for use in soft drink PET bottles from summer 2018 onward
FtoP Direct Recycle Technology
A technology in which “flake” created by pulverizing and washing recovered PET bottles is treated at high temperature and low pressure for a fixed period and that, after being melted and filtered, enables the preform to be manufactured directly. In order to form preforms of uniform quality, it is important to pour the melted flake into the molding machine at a constant pressure, and the development of this technology involved putting up actual facilities and verification over a protracted period of time. In comparison to the previous setup, which required a large number of processes leading up to the manufacture of the preform, such as crystallization and drying, it is estimated that reductions*1 in CO2 emissions of approximately 25% will be possible.
Background of development
Suntory Holdings Limited and Kyoei Industry Co., Ltd have a track record in promoting activities to reduce the environmental impact of PET bottle manufacturing, such as by developing Japan’s first bottle-to-bottle mechanical recycling system*3 in 2011. On this occasion, with the aim of achieving further reductions in the environmental burden, the two companies entered into a successful joint initiative with two overseas equipment manufacturers (SIPA SpA of Italy and EREMA Group GmbH) to develop the “FtoP Direct Recycle Technology.”
*1 Per 1kg of PET bottle preforms manufactured
*2 A PET bottle template shaped like a test tube and made from PET resin. The PET bottle is formed by heating this and injecting air under high pressure.
*3 One of the means used to recycle PET bottles. A method by which used PET bottles are pulverized and washed, then further treated under conditions of high temperature and low pressure for a fixed period of time in order to remove impurities from the recycled material. Introduced by the Company in 2011.
*4 An approach to PET bottle development that combines the reduced use of resin and the utilization of recycled materials to achieve thoroughly effective use of resources, along with the substitution of petroleum-based materials for renewable materials where possible (Reduce/Recycle + Bio). By “Reduce” we do not only mean the reduction of the number of actual bottles, but also the promotion of a thoroughgoing weight reduction program that includes labels and caps. We are also working actively to reduce environmental impact such as by, in the “Recycle” category, building Japan's first bottle-to-bottle mechanical recycling system and, in the “Bio” category, introducing products using PET bottles in which plant-based materials make up 30% of the total.
*5 Based on a domestic market mineral water PET bottle in the 500 ml to 600 ml size range, as of January 2018
About Kyoei Industry Co., Ltd
(Head office: Oyama City, Tochigi Prefecture) Recycled materials manufacturer, involved in the recycling, processing and sale of synthetic resins. Has been involved in the recycling of PET bottles since 1986, and the corporate group of which it centers manufactures a total of 80,000 tons of recycled PET resin annually.
About SIPA SpA
(Head office: Italy) Manufacturer of beverage filling equipment such as preform bottle molding machinery and fillers. In 2013 the company developed “XTREME” rotary injection-compression molding system, and introduced the first machine of the series at Suntory Products Limited’s Haruna Plant.
(Head office: Austria) Manufacturer of equipment such as plastic recycling machinery etc. Developed “VACUREMA” dedicated PET bottle recycling system in 1996. Has a record of shipping more than 200 units globally since launch, and the system is also used by Kyoei Industry Co., Ltd.
About Suntory Group’s environmental activities
With the aim of fulfilling the Suntory Group's corporate philosophy of “In Harmony with People and Nature,” in addition to promoting global environmental management, we are involved with a variety of activities to reduce the environmental impact, so as to leave a sustainable global environment to future generations. In the container and packaging field, based on the Suntory Group's unique 2R+B strategy*4, we have worked continuously to develop PET bottles with a reduced environmental impact, such as by introducing the lightest*5 domestically manufactured PET bottle, 30% of which consists of plant-based materials, for use in the 550ml size of Suntory Tennensui, and by constructing a trial plant for PET bottles made from 100% plant-based materials.