Recycling Drinks Cartons

Drink cartons in the blue PMD bag are made of three different materials: cardboard (appr. 75%), plastic (21 %) and aluminum (4 %). These three materials are separated during recycling and then recycled or valorized.

gerecycleerd drankkarton melk

How are drinks cartons recycled?

  • Drinks cartons are sorted automatically or by hand in the sorting center.
  • Just like waste paper, the drink cartons are submerged in water. This way, the paper fibers become unstuck from the plastic and aluminum layers.
  • Unstuck cardboard fibers are then further recycled in the same way as ordinary paper-cardboard. The plastic can be recycled or used as a source of energy for cement ovens, whereas aluminum is either recycled, either utilized elsewhere.

Watch the video about the recycling of drinks cartons: Dutch version

What are the recycled materials used for?

The cardboard fibers from drinks cartons are used in the production of:

  • household paper (kitchen roll, paper tissues, toilet paper)
  • cardboard boxes
  • paper bags
  • envelopes

Plastic and aluminum are either seperatly recycled, either used in the cement industry. Sometimes, plastic can also be used as a source of energy for drying paper paste in the papermaking machine. Aluminum can serve as a binding agent in cement or is recovered as a raw material.

Why recycle drinks cartons?

The pulp from drink cartons provides long fibers of a high quality that can replace more expensive primary paper pulp. Drinks cartons are a specific type of packaging composed of cardboard, polyethylene and a thin layer of aluminum. These three ingredients are separated and recycled and/or reused separately.

Sorting correctly is important!

And that is why we are also counting on you. Consult the sorting rules for PMD.

More information?

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