PaperAge Magazine

Europac Invests More Than 13 Million Euros in Environmental Improvements 2017-2018

recycled paper

May 28, 2018 (Press Release) - The presence of the Europac Group throughout the value chain of the packaging industry makes it a benchmark in the circular economy, characterised by the use of natural and recycled raw materials, the optimisation of consumption of materials and re-use of 80% of waste generated in the production process. Between 2017 and 2018, investments in minimising the environmental impact, improving waste management and increasing process efficiency amounts to 13.4 million euros, of which 8 million correspond to 2018.

Against the backdrop of World Recycling Day on Thursday 17 May, the Company restates its intention to become an integrated waste manager on the Iberian Peninsula, with three waste treatment and re-use centres in Spain and another three in Portugal at which the Company has environmental licences to treat more than 150 types of different waste.

Recovered paper is part of this waste, which is re-used as a raw material in the paper production process at all the Company's facilities. Specifically, 365,000 tonnes a year of recovered paper, 40% of the needs of this raw material, come from self-supply. With the resulting paper, cardboard sheets are manufactured that are turned into packaging — a biodegradable and recyclable product manufactured from recycled raw materials.

Re-use of production process waste

However, recycling and the re-use of waste is also present throughout the whole production process. Firstly, 90% of the water needed to dilute and transport cellulose fibres from recovered paper is recycled in closed circuits to be re-used in other processes and returned to the natural environment after passing through waste water treatment plants (WWTP).

Furthermore, the WWTP filters retain the sludge which, after undergoing a composting process, is transformed into organic fertilizer for the agriculture sector. Similarly, the sand from the process to purify the cellulose pasta is re-used as a raw material in companies in the cement and ceramic sectors.

Lastly, the only waste generated in the packaging production process are the cardboard cut-offs from the conversion process, where the corrugated board sheets are cut and die cast to form boxes. These cardboard cut-offs are once again incorporated in the process as raw materials.

The Europac Group is an integrated manufacturer of paper and packaging with operations in Spain, France and Portugal. To learn more, please visit: www.europacgroup.com.

SOURCE: Europac Group