NZ’s largest bot­tled wa­ter pro­duc­tion line

DEMM Engineering & Manufacturing - - ENVIRONMENTAL -

THE OPEN­ING of a new mul­ti­mil­lion- dol­lar pro­duc­tion line in Waikato will see a sig­nif­i­cant pro­por­tion of the New Zealand’s still bot­tled wa­ter pack­aged in re­cy­cled plas­tic bot­tles, ac­cord­ing to man­u­fac­tur­ers.

The new pro­duc­tion line at the coun­try’s largest wa­ter bot­tling fa­cil­ity in Po­keno is ca­pa­ble of pro­duc­ing 220 mil­lion bot­tles made from re­cy­cled PET (rPET) plas­tic an­nu­ally.

NZ Drinks di­rec­tor Kyle Os­borne says the move is part of their long term jour­ney to­wards a more sus­tain­able prod­uct.

“As New Zealand’s largest bot­tled wa­ter pro­ducer we felt it was our re­spon­si­bil­ity to in­tro­duce the lat­est raw ma­te­rial and man­u­fac­tur­ing tech­nol­ogy as an im­por­tant step to­wards creat­ing a more sus­tain­able in­dus­try.

“In the­ory, there is no limit to the num­ber of times the plas­tic from a bot­tle of wa­ter can be re­cy­cled into new prod­ucts – what we are miss­ing in NZ is the in­fra­struc­ture nec­es­sary to achieve this.

“Cur­rently the economies of scale needed to in­tro­duce a suitable re­cy­cling fa­cil­ity are not there and Ki­wis sim­ply don’t con­sume enough of this type of prod­uct to make it vi­able – which leaves us out of step with big­ger in­ter­na­tional mar­kets such as Aus­tralia,” he says.

NZ Drinks di­rec­tor Tony Ves­per says the use of rPET should be­come the stan­dard for still bot­tled wa­ter in this coun­try.

“With an­nual sales across our port­fo­lio in­creas­ing at 139 per­cent, our Pure NZ la­bel is the coun­try’s fastest grow­ing still wa­ter brand and will now be pack­aged in 100 per­cent re­cy­cled plas­tic bot­tles.

“We first in­tro­duced re­cy­cled plas­tic into some of our ranges two years ago but the new line will al­low us to con­tinue to ex­pand pro­duc­tion of bot­tled wa­ter in re­cy­cled pack­ag­ing, while at the same time sub­stan­tially im­prov­ing ef­fi­ciency by re­duc­ing the weight of rPET used per bot­tle.

“The new line uses the lat­est tech­nol­ogy from Krones, Ger­many and is ca­pa­ble of form­ing around 28,000 600ml bot­tles from re­cy­cled raw ma­te­rial and then fill­ing them with wa­ter – ev­ery hour,” he says.

Ves­per says their ul­ti­mate goal is to see an in­dus­try that is ca­pa­ble of cap­tur­ing con­sumer waste like empty plas­tic bot­tles and con­tin­u­ously reusing them.

He says a waste min­imi­sa­tion pro­gramme at their lo­cally owned and op­er­ated man­u­fac­tur­ing fa­cil­ity also sees all sur­plus plas­tic wrap­ping re­turned to source for re­cy­cling.

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