Coca-Cola European Partners (CCEP), the world’s largest independent Coca-Cola bottler, has taken an important step on its journey towards 100% rPET for its plastic bottles by funding CuRe Technology – a recycling start-up which seeks to provide a new lease of life for difficult to recycle plastic polyester waste.
The funding from CCEP, through its innovation investment fund, CCEP Ventures, will enable CuRe Technology to accelerate its ‘polyester rejuvenation’ technology from pilot plant to commercial readiness. Once the technology is commercialised, CCEP will receive the majority of the output from a CuRe Technology-licensed, new-build plant.
Once operational, CuRe Technology has the potential to support CCEP’s ambition, in partnership with The Coca-Cola Company in Western Europe, to eliminate virgin oil-based PET from its PET bottles within the next decade. This will contribute to removing of a total of over 200,000* tonnes of virgin oil-based PET from CCEP’s primary packaging portfolio a year and support the transition to a circular economy for PET packaging.
CuRe Technology uses a partial depolymerisation process – shortening the polymer chains just enough to allow removal of many impurities and to rejuvenate food grade PET to high quality rPET, and may be less energy intensive than full depolymerisation offering lower associated C02 emissions.