SK Chemicals ready for mass production of chemically recycled PET for food containers

By Lim Chang-won Posted : January 25, 2022, 10:50 Updated : January 25, 2022, 10:50

[Courtesy of SK Chemicals]

SEOUL -- SK Chemicals, a unit of South Korea's third-largest conglomerate SK Group, is ready for the mass production of its Skypet CR raw material for food containers by using chemically recycled polyethylene terephthalate (PET) bottles.  

PET is the most common thermoplastic polymer resin used in the creation of fabrics and plastic bottles. Recycled PET bottles have been used to manufacture clothes, bags and shoes. Chemical recycling breaks down and returns plastic to its pure, raw material form. It is an attractive way to address the explosive growth of plastic waste and disposal problems.

The production of Skypet CR is to begin in January. SK Chemicals will increase production depending on market conditions and supply raw materials for food and beverage bottles and food packaging films at home and abroad while accelerating efforts to target textile markets.

SK Chemicals said that Skypet CR with excellent physical properties and eco-friendliness such as transparency, appearance and safety can be used in food containers because there is no contamination of foreign substances and quality degradation.

The company has expanded a lineup of chemical recycle products including ECOTRIA CR, a  copolyester brand that materializes functional characteristics unique to copolyesters, such as transparency, appearance, and chemical resistance while using just 50 percent of raw materials broken down through chemical recycling. It can be used for cosmetic containers, blister packaging, and decorative sheets that require high functionality and transparency.

Copolyesters form when modifications are made to polyesters. They retain their strength, clarity, and other mechanical properties even when exposed to a variety of chemicals that typically affect other materials. Copolyester resins have proved to be effective in packaging applications, due to their toughness, versatility and chemical resistance.

Plastic products are broken down into microscopic sizes but they still remain in the environment. The accumulation of plastic wastes has become a serious global problem. South Korea nurtures the white biotechnology industry that focuses on the creation and distribution of biodegradable bioplastics. 
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