With 1 billion plastic water bottles purchased every year, Australians are creating 660,000 tonnes of plastic waste annually. And whilst PET has its place in food packaging, the two companies are working together to ensure that the material ends up in a circular economy, where PET is either recycled or reused.
Visy uses food grade Recycled PET (rPET) in the manufacture of its plastic bottles. In this partnership, the rPET that is not fit for Visy’s bottle-to-bottle recycling will be purchased by Geofabrics to make sustainable geotextiles for use in Australia’s road, rail, and mining industries.
Traditional geotextiles can be made from unsustainable virgin materials. Geofabrics’ bidim® Green and Sealmac® Green are the only Australian made recycled alternatives, replacing offshore sourced polymer with Australian sourced recycled polymer – direct from Visy’s recycling plant in Smithfield NSW.
Dennis Grech, Managing Director & CEO of Geofabrics Australasia said the relationship between Visy and Geofabrics is a real win-win for Australia.
“For the first time, Australian sourced recycled plastic bottles are converted into geotextiles that build Australia’s national infrastructure; the roads we drive on, our rail networks and our mining assets. Why does this matter? We are taking plastic waste out of landfills and out of our waterways and oceans and, in doing so, we are building Australia’s recycling industry and creating jobs for all Australians,” he said.
“Sustainability is at the heart of everything we do at Geofabrics and Visy is a wonderful and supportive partner in fulfilling our ambitions for a greener Australia.”
Mark De Wit, Chief Operating Officer at Visy said the new partnership with Geofabrics is an excellent example of how Visy’s innovation approach can work with our partners’ product development processes to create practical and sustainable solutions that unlock value on multiple levels.
“Geofabrics are making great progress in the sustainability space and, specifically, through the innovative use of rPET in manufacturing a range of products that will be deployed in building Australia’s key infrastructure,” he said.
“Visy has a long history of developing technologies that change the face of the industry, and our success is cemented through collaborations with like-minded businesses, such as Geofabrics, who have a strong orientation to sustainability and a commitment to making a positive long-term contribution to the wider community. Together this new partnership helps us make further steps towards strengthening Australia’s recycling industry, while creating local jobs.”