Presentation of a golden FIBC made from PET bottle flakes

The Flexible Intermediate Bulk Container Association (FI­BCA) hosted its 34th conference in Hollywood, California/USA from 11.10.-13.10.2017. Among the more than 100 participants from over 25 countries was Austrian-based manufacturer Starlinger & Co. GmbH, who specializes in machinery and process technology for woven plastic packaging production and PET recycling and refinement. Jointly with its US headquarters American Starlinger-Sahm, Starlinger presented a golden FIBC made from 100 % rPET bottle flakes. The company’s “bottle-to-bag” technology had already been introduced with great success at Interpack in Europe early in 2017. Starlinger spent years developing and refining the process technology for the production of fabric from PET flakes. Initial trials were performed with virgin material; the next step involved the use of recycled PET (rPET pellets). After successful trials, Starlinger moved on to produce tapes, and consequently fabric, from PET bottle flakes. The fabric used for the golden FIBC (the golden color results from the use of beer bottles) is manufactured on a tape extrusion line type starEX 1600 PF with twinTAPE precision cross winders and circular weaving looms type FX.

The use of PET has many advantages. Heavy-duty fabrics benefit from the extreme resistance and shape stability of PET (the material maintains its modulus and strength at temperatures up to 80°C and has excellent creep resistance). But bags made from PET are not only durable, they are also recyclable: After their use, PET bags may be recycled and reused in packaging production.

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