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How to recycle plastic multilayer packaging waste ?

​Plastics in multi-layer packaging can be particularly difficult to recycle. The CEA is engaged in the EU MERLIN project that aims at designing innovative solutions for recycling processes of these plastic materials. Its goal is to develop processes to reuse low-quality recycled polyethylene (rPE) from the delamination of rigid and flexible food packaging and recycled PET (rPET) from the delamination of flexible packaging. 

Published on 29 November 2022

​Adding specific additives such as fillers and antioxidants to these recycled PEs and PETs using reactive extrusion is one way to improve the materials' mechanical properties and stability so that they can be reused.

Specifically, the CEA will develop a maleic anhydride grafting (MAg) process to improve rPET/rPE multi-layer adhesion and affinity. This would allow to use more environmentally friendly adhesives, even get rid of it.

The solid and melt properties of flexible rPET will be improved by increasing their molar mass with the addition of chain extenders and the integrating of specific fillers by reactive extrusion process.

Flexible and rigid recycled PE and PET packaging materials developed will be scaled up and sent to partners for the development of packaging prototypes.

Watch video about our food packaging material recovery and recycling process:

VideoMERLIN Project


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