18. February 2020
This year, the ERDE initiative is conducting a pilot project for the collection and recycling of used asparagus films. The goal is to collect and mechanically recycle around 200 tonnes of black and white film over the year.
In the pilot project, which is being launched in time for the start of the 2020 asparagus season, ERDE is collaborating with film manufacturer Reyenvas S.A. and Wurth Pflanzenschutz GmbH, a sales partner of Reyenvas in Germany. Asparagus farmers can either deliver used films to the Wurth premises in Appenweiher or have them collected directly from their farms. Swept, slit and cored asparagus films are mechanically recycled. Films that do not meet these criteria are recycled thermally. When they buy Reyenvas asparagus films from Wurth in future, farmers will receive a certificate that confirms the films’ participation in the material cycle and can be use it for marketing purposes, such as direct marketing.
ERDE has set itself the goal of winning over more asparagus film manufacturers to the initiative. As well as asparagus film, they hope to collect mini-tunnel film, as the manufacturers and products are very similar. Dr. Lorena Fricke, Project Leader at the ERDE initiative: “As soon as we have achieved a significant market share, we also want to support operative collection by ERDE members financially. That will make recycling between 30% and 50% cheaper for farmers than thermal disposal.”
Since its foundation in 2013, ERDE has worked to complete the material cycle for crop plastics. ERDE currently already collects almost 35% of used silo and stretch films, almost 100% of which are mechanically recycled. 60% of this is recycled in Germany, the rest elsewhere in the EU – and all into valuable raw materials that can be used to produce new, high-quality products such as agricultural and construction films, irrigation tubes and waste bags.
Under the umbrella of IK Industrievereinigung Kunststoffverpackungen e.V. and in cooperation with RIGK as the system partner, ERDE organises the recovery and eco-efficient mechanical recycling of separated used agricultural films made from PE-LD (fraction 1) and PE-LLD (fraction 2) via collection partners across Germany. From 2020, bale nets will also be collected via the initiative. Agricultural contractors and farmers collect the crop plastics and hand them in to a collection point clean-swept and free from coarse contamination (www.erde-recycling.de/rund-um-die-abgabe/sammelstellen-termine.html). The price is determined directly by the collection point. Recycling companies then process the collected materials into new plastic raw materials. The following manufacturers and initial distributors of harvest films are currently patrons of the ERDE initiative: ASPLA s.a., bpi agriculture, Groupe Barbier, CLAAS Vertriebsgesellschaft mbH, COVERIS FLEXIBLES AUSTRIA GMBH, DUOPLAST AG, Karatzis S.A., Manuli Stretch Deutschland GmbH, POLIFILM EXTRUSION GmbH, Ab Rani Plast Oy, Reyenvas S.A., RKW Agri GmbH & Co. KG, Solplast S.A, Sotrafa S.A., TAMA CE GmbH and TRIOPLAST GmbH