This page provides a profile of SULO NZ's milk bottle reincarnation project.
Karen Murray, General Manager of SULO NZ with the new mobile recycling bins manufactured from recycled waste milk bottles.
Source: SULO NZ Limited
In 2010, SULO Talbot Limited (now SULO NZ Limited) was awarded up to $141,000 from the Waste Minimisation Fund to trial using milk bottles as a raw material for mobile recycling bins.
The research involved collaboration with the Plastics Centre of Excellence at the University of Auckland and Clariant New Zealand.
The trial successfully proved that new recycling bins can be produced using a high percentage of plastics from used milk bottles and other high density polyethylene plastics. During the research SULO Talbot was able to increase the recycled content of its mobile recycling bins from under 20 percent to 65 percent.
Milk bottle content is now a fixed raw material feedstock for SULO Talbot and is used as a selling point against overseas competitors. For every mobile recycling bin the company produces about 90 two-litre milk bottles can be diverted from landfill.
Other benefits include:
- used milk bottles that were previously exported overseas are recycled in New Zealand
- there is less dependency on imported virgin materials for the manufacture of new milk bottles.