Recycled Polymers 101

In a world that is becoming increasingly sensitive to fossil-fuel based plastics, IFG has made it part of our core strategy to develop and market an industry-leading range of more sustainable staple fibre solutions. In this blog we aim to run you through the basics of recycled polymers, allowing you to understand the positive impact they can have on your business.

For starters, how are they made?

Well, that’s a complicated one to answer, there’s a big difference between how different polymers are recycled. Traditionally when plastics are first brought into the system, they are sorted and placed into various categories. It may not be the most glamorous aspect of the supply chain, but its role is crucial. Sorting to a high degree of purity means polymers can be re-used and retain their value.

Once sorted and cleaned, these polymers can be melted, extruded and cut into granules for re-use into new products.

What are their uses?

The colour and physical properties of the plastic before and after extrusion dictate the potential end uses, but availability of consistent recycled material can also influence the amount of uses for the polymers. Ideally, the plastic will be very well screened and not contaminated, allowing them to be used for a variety of different markets including Automotive and Floor Coverings, whilst retaining the polymers high performance and high tolerance.

Whilst the use of recycled polymers in the past may not have been cost-effective, with the improvement of technology and the increase in the cost of raw materials, it is becoming much more viable. In recent years the use of recycled polymers has become much more frequent, with automotive companies looking to maximise the sustainability of their products through using the polymers in the manufacturing of new vehicles.

Contact our expert team today to discuss your requirements. You can find our recycled polymers range here.