Where their model differs from existing infrastructure is that their technology is deployed in a decentralised way supporting the developing of local circular supply chains. Whether placed close to the point of collection (i.e., a retailer distribution centre), or at FMCG production facilities, they allow for the efficient processing and reuse of packaging. CleanCells® were initially designed to process glass bottles, cleaning, drying and inspecting bottles to prepare them for redistribution and refill. With Petainer, they have expanded that to be able to process returnable PET bottles, which have different processing requirements to refillable glass. Again can now process returnable PET to a quality level equal to that which is expected of by current Petainer refillable customers.
Petainer’s expertise in refillable PET bottles exceeds 30 years and believe in the refillable model as both a more sustainable packaging solution and a way to reduce plastic waste in the environment. Refillable packaging has been shown to reduce the amount of plastic litter (German collection rates are as high as 98%) through a combination of the investment from the producer in retrieving their packaging, and for the consumer to retain their deposits (added to returnable bottles to encourage return). Running alongside a single use system, Petainer has found it offers benefits to the overall packaging system. Where there are not currently nationally run systems, Again can step in to provide the foundations for refillable supply chain.