Circular Economy Solutions For Plastics - CircularAssure

Advancing recycled plastic development and enabling the circular economy for plastics through assurance, testing and certification services, we support brands, recycling companies, polymers, plastics, and packaging businesses and other stakeholders in the recycled plastics value chain to close the loop with CircularAssure

To achieve a circular economy for plastics and advance recycled plastic development, significant challenges must be overcome. Plastics are used in all areas of day-to-day life, including packaging to keep food safe, in medical devices and PPE, in toys, automotive and electronic applications.

Across all sectors, climate change, energy use, pervasive waste in our environment, changing consumer preferences and pressures from investors or governments are driving companies to reduce their environmental impact and justify their green claims.

Legislative developments including the European Green Deal, EU Directives on waste or single-use plastics, and the UK Plastics Packaging Tax are driving companies throughout the polymers/plastics value chain to rethink wasteful production, consider what happens after consumption of their products and build a strategy for plastics in a circular economy. Companies are also looking to accelerate innovation processes which are driven by sustainability goals to achieve safe, well-performing products that are differentiated in the marketplace.

Plastics and the Circular Economy
Most plastics are made from petrochemicals and many plastic products are designed to be used once, then discarded into landfills, burned, or become pervasive waste in our environment including our oceans and rivers. Plastic pollution is rapidly outpacing efforts to prevent or reduce it, however, by rethinking how we design and develop plastic materials and how we use them, stakeholders can create a circular economy. Innovation is required to ensure that the plastics we do need are reusable, recyclable, or compostable and strategies to circulate plastics are required so that we use to keep them in the economy and out of the environment.

CircularAssure - Plastic Circular Economy Assurance Solutions
Intertek’s CircularAssure is a risk-based quality assurance program, which comprises a program of assurance, testing, certification services and unique insight-enabling analytical technologies that can be applied across the recycled plastic value chain. From waste collectors and recycling companies to polymer producers and brands, CircularAssure provides plastics circular economy solutions to ensure quality, safety, and optimise value of recycled plastic materials and products including:

 

  • Waste collectors and mechanical recycling companies can improve profitability of their recycled plastic product through insight-enabling testing to determine the quality of materials that have come from recycling.
  • Chemical recycling companies will be able to boost process efficiencies and understand the variability of materials through CircularAssure’s inline chemical analysis technology and quality control testing service.
  • Polymer producers will be able to assess how processable new recycled materials are through lab-scale processing and performance test programs. Additionally, CircularAssure will help them to evaluate materials against safety and performance specifications for their intended use through regulatory-led analysis such as migration testing which is required to ensure food packaging compliance.
  • Brands will be able to demonstrate the levels of recycled content where the novel materials are used in products through recycled content certification.


From electronics to automotive, from packaging to construction, across all sectors that use polymers or plastics, CircularAssure helps businesses to close the loop and tell their sustainability story. 
Contact our CircularAssure team now to discover how our risk-based quality assurance program can help you to achieve Total Quality Assurance and accelerate innovation of well-performing, safe and compliant products and processes that benefit our daily lives.

 

Auditing and testing supporting selectivity and control of incoming polymer waste stream demonstrating the validity of feedstocks

Understanding environmental impact & demonstrating sustainability
Recycled content verification and certification
• Resource consumption per kg of resin.
• Carbon footprint
• Life Cycle Assessment (LCA)
• Eco-claims verification
• ISCC Plus audits and certification

Validate the cleaning process during mechanical recycling with testing for substances of concern including phthalates, metals, and volatiles
Wastewater monitoring for harmful substances testing including microplastics monitoring and application of PAT inline technologies
Qualification of materials and process with NIR online technologies – “Interpret”– to validate waste output from process

Evaluating and demonstrating quality and safety of materials 
• Confirm that materials meet the specific requirements of the brands/clients through rigorous food contact migration testing and screening for NIAS
• Screening for specific substances to determine whether the materials meet regulatory requirements - e.g., FDA
• Safety Data Sheets
• Screening programs for volatiles, phthalates, heavy metals, primary aromatic amine etc.

    Auditing and testing supporting selectivity and control of incoming polymer waste stream demonstrating the validity of feedstocks

    Supporting commercial viability from process prototype to scale-up
    • Laboratory testing solutions - advanced R&D support or standardized testing (e.g., ISO and ASTM), comparison of materials on scale-up
    • Contamination testing/screening/investigations
    • Comparison of recycled material vs virgin material to assess physical & chemical properties - how do these change through cycles of recycling?
    • Processability evaluation (lab scale compounding, extrusion, and testing)

    Material Quality and Compliance
    • Qualification of material using NIR in-line technologies – "Interpret" – to validate the output from the process
    • Product quality control testing of pyrolysis oil (physico-chem, impurities, etc.)
    • Syngas analysis (for ongoing use as fuel)
    • Regulatory compliance including REACH regulatory guidance & documentation coupled with testing
    • Hydrocarbon analysis

    Process health - Chemical screening tests for unwanted substances of concern to disrupt crackers e.g., chlorine, oxygen, and silicon
    Product quality for polymer production - QC of incoming material for the polymerisation process

    Processing infrastructure assurance
    • Risk-based asset management - Aware™
    • Corrosion Inspection, materials corrosion engineering
    • Turnarounds/shutdowns

    Environmental Testing Solutions
    • Emission Testing Technologies
    • Wastewater analysis
    • Microplastics in wastewater

    Materials Quality and Safety
    • Screening for specific substances to determine whether the materials meet regulatory requirements - e.g., FDA
    • Processability Evaluation of circular materials
    • Application-based consulting and testing e.g., food contact or substance that poses a risk to health e.g., heavy metals, PFAS

    Understanding environmental impact & demonstrating sustainability
    • Recycled content audit and certification
    • Resource consumption per kg of resin.
    • Carbon footprint/ Life Cycle Assessment (LCA)
    • Eco-claims verification
    • ISCC Plus audits and certification

     

     
    Global market regulatory assurance
    • Biodegradability
    • Eco-Claims verification
    • Laboratory testing - advanced R&D support, standardized testing
    • Contamination resolution
    • Comparison of recycled material to virgin material to assess properties
    • Chemical safety testing
    • Processability evaluation (Lab-scale compounding, extrusion and testing)

    Supplier inspections and supplier risk mapping

    Processing Infrastructure Assurance
    • Risk-based asset management - Aware™
    • Corrosion Inspection, Materials corrosion engineering
    • Turnarounds/shutdowns

    Environmental testing solutions
    • Emission Testing Technologies
    • Wastewater analysis
    • Microplastics in wastewater

    Processing production assurance solutions
    • Product testing for physical and chemical properties and performance
    • Failure or contamination investigations
    • Environmental quality and safety audit and certifications
    • ISCC Plus certification

    Application Support - Physical testing, impact testing, electrical safety, mechanical properties, adhesion, surface chemistry, manufacturing specification testing

    Global regulatory guidance dossier stewardship for food contact and migration NIAS testing physical properties

    OEM specifications testing and failure investigation
    • Weathering & performance testing
    • Certification against specifications

    Understanding environmental impact & demonstrating sustainability
    • Recycled content audit and certification
    • Resource consumption per kg of resin.
    • Carbon footprint/ Life Cycle Assessment (LCA)
    • Eco-claims verification
    • ISCC Plus audits and certification

    Demonstrating commitment to sustainability:
    • Recycled content audit and certification, ISCC certification
    • Resource consumption per kg of resin
    • Carbon footprint/LCA
    • Recycled content verification
    • Eco-claims verification
    • ESG audits and corporate sustainability programs

    Materials/product quality & safety
    • Regulatory compliance and testing (e.g., food contact)
    • Performance and failure testing
    • Contamination investigations

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