Official opening of the fourth new sorting centre for the New Blue Bag
Val’Up, the fourth PMD sorting centre, has been opened in Ghlin (Mons), in the province of Hainaut. The new infrastructure has the capacity to sort 50,000 tonnes of PMD household packaging from over two million Belgians every year.
The Val'Up site is Wallonia's largest sorting centre for packaging from the blue PMD bags. It covers 1.05 ha and employs 90 workers. Despite the advanced technologies involved, the smooth running of the unit depends on the presence of people, specifically forklift truck operators, handlers, sorters, electromechanical engineers and other staff. Five thousand bags are sorted per hour, into 14 fractions of pure materials.
Val‘Up is the result of a public-private partnership between the Cœur du Hainaut territorial development agency (IDEA), the intermunicipal company Ipalle Wallonie-Picarde et Sud-Hainaut and two private players specialized in environmental services, the Veolia and Vanheede groups. The plant called for an investment of over € 38 million.
Sort more to recycle more
With the introduction of the New Blue Bag, members of the public have gradually been able to put more plastic packaging in their blue bag, including tubs, yoghurt pots, containers and plastic films – waste that previously ended up in the ordinary household bin. The extended sorting message allows us to offer a practical response to Belgian and European recycling targets. The excellent quality of the sorted materials and the uniformity of the flows from Belgium’s five new sorting centres, including Val’Up, ensure high quality recycling to produce new secondary raw materials which are then used to make new products or packaging.
The next step is to build recycling centres for the materials sorted, and in particular plastic materials for which recycling capacity in Belgium is still limited. We have already announced the awarding of four new recycling contracts and a fifth is to follow in the coming months. All the new facilities will be operational by 2024.