Can Plastic Be Environmentally Friendly?
The PinnPACK and CarbonLITE PET Life Cycle
Click on each step to learn more!
A Water Bottle
Bottles are Baled at a MRF and sent to CarbonLITE to be...
Ground into Flake
Sent To PinnPACK
Extruded into Sheet Rolls
Thermoformed into Packaging
It Can Be Recycled Again
Learn About the Steps that Close the PET Life Cycle
It Starts when YOU Recycle your bottle
Every time you throw a plastic water bottle into a recycling bin, you are helping start the Process!
Approximately 5.5 Billion Pounds of PET bottles are available to be recycled every year!
Producing 1 Pound of Recycled PET from Bottles takes 84% less energy that producing 1 Pound of Virgin PET Bottles.
Recycling 1 Pound of plastic uses around 1 gallon of water, while producing 1 Pound of plastic uses 22 gallons of water.
The Bottles Are Baled and Sent to CarbonLITE Recycling
Once the bottles are put into a recycle bin, they are sent to a Material Recovery Facility (MRF) where it is separated from other recyclable materials and compressed into a 1,000 Pound Bale of plastic bottles.
The bales are sent to PinnPACK's Sister Company, CarbonLITE Recycling, which is the World's Largest Bottle-To-Bottle Recycling Company.
CarbonLITE sorts out Non-Recyclables
The bottles are further separated from any trash and debris and Automatic Sorting Machines segregate the bottles into 3 streams: Clear PET, Colored PET (mostly green), and Non-PET Plastic. The Non-PET plastic is re-baled and sold for further processing.
And Washes the Bottles
Washing the bottles not only removes any dirty and impurities, but also removes any of the labels and glue that was used. The Caps and Labels that are removed are separated and pelletized in Polyolefin (PO) and sold for industrial purposes.
And Washed Again!
Just to make sure we have removed as many impurities as possible! At this step, the plastic is called "Washed Flake" and is used in packaging for "not-ready-to-eat" foods like strawberries, blueberries, grapes, and blackberries that need to be washed before eating.
The Flakes are then Pelletized
The Last Step at CarbonLITE is Called "Solid State Polymerization", where the flakes, undergo high temperatures, low pressures, and time to be sterilized to be FDA Approved Food-Grade. The flakes are extruded under intense pressure and are turned into pellets, also known as Post Consumer Resin or PCR.
The Pellets are Sent to PinnPACK
PinnPACK and CarbonLITE both have plants located in Southern California, making the shipment of materials easy and quick.
As CarbonLITE grows and builds recycling plants across the United States, PinnPACK will also follow, building plants near all CarbonLITE Recycling facilities. Currently, CarbonLITE has facilities in California and Texas, and currently building a plant in Pennsylvania.
Where We Extrude the Pellets into Sheet Rolls
PinnPACK takes the PCR, sometimes mixed with Virgin Resin, and de-humidifies, crystallizes, melts, and extrudes it into Sheet Rolls of PET/rPET Material. Sheet Rolls can be made from 100% Recycled PET or blended with Virgin PET.
And Thermoform the Sheet into Food Packaging
All of our Finished Products are made from a percentage Post-Consumer Recycled PET. Percentages are based on customer specifications, however, our goal is to create packaging using 100% PCR and rPET material.
All our Black and Green Parts are made from 100% PCR, while Clear Parts range between 40-60% PCR.
Help Us Close the Loop!
PET is the #1 recyclable plastic, therefore, that PET Food container can be recycled! Please rinse before.
NOTE: PET Packaging recycling is based on the city, so please check your local recycling program!