ALPLA, Re-Purpose partner to strengthen plastics cycle in South Africa

27th May 2024 By: Tasneem Bulbulia - Senior Contributing Editor Online

ALPLA, Re-Purpose partner to strengthen plastics cycle in South Africa

Re-Purpose uses a reverse collection model
Photo by: ALPLA/Re-Purpose

Plastic packaging manufacturer and recycler the ALPLA Group and waste repurposing company Re-Purpose have announced a strategic partnership that is expected to advance sustainable packaging solutions and strengthen the feedstock value chain of ALPLA’s first polyethylene terephthalate (PET) recycling facility in Africa.

ALPLA is investing €60-million in the construction of a recycling plant in Ballito, KwaZulu-Natal.

Construction of the plant on the 90 000 m2 site is said to be well advanced.

From the beginning of 2025, the plant is expected to produce over 35 000 t/y of recycled PET.

Durban-based Re-Purpose is said to be experienced in the reverse logistics of post-consumer plastic waste through source-oriented collection programmes.

With four material recovery facilities around KwaZulu-Natal, Re-Purpose is seeking to develop and empower local communities and buy-back centres to collect and divert a considerable volume of plastic waste. The model is also said to be creating hundreds of jobs and income for previously disadvantaged people.

The partnership combines the recycling expertise of ALPLA and the reverse logistics of Re-Purpose.

By joining forces, the two companies aim to develop innovative solutions and promote the circular economy.

Concurrently, they aim to create many jobs in KwaZulu-Natal, in neighbouring provinces and potentially throughout the country.

As part of the collaboration, Re-Purpose will maximise the use of its current baling centres and set up new centres to streamline the collection of PET bottles.

Re-Purpose will also assist ALPLA in building a strategic supplier base for PET bottle bales and work with key stakeholders to expand community reach and separation-at-source programmes.

The aim is to contribute to the collection of 5 000 t of PET a month.

This volume is expected to be required for the full-capacity operation of ALPLA’s recycling plant from 2026.