Press Release: Indaver is the first to start up a new PMD sorting installation

Waste treatment company Indaver finished construction of a brand-new PMD sorting facility in Willebroek last week. The company already had a PMD sorting facility on that site. However, with the introduction of the ‘New Blue Bag’, which will be implemented in phases throughout the whole of Belgium, every citizen will be supplying 8 kilograms more PMD each year than before. To be able to treat this greater amount, and to be able to sort more materials, it was necessary to invest in a new facility. The new facility is three times as big as the previous one, and will treat the PMD waste of around 3 million residents each year. 

More PMD, more sorted materials

Since 1995, Indaver has been sorting PMD waste in Willebroek into 8 pure material streams, ready for recycling.  With the introduction of the New Blue Bag, the number of different types of plastic that can be supplied in the bag, has been extended. From ‘plastic bottles and containers’ to ‘all plastic household packaging’. As a result, each resident will supply on average 7 to 8 kilograms more PMD waste than before.

In September 2019, Indaver contemplated the construction of a completely new facility. This was needed to be able to treat these larger amounts of PMD waste into 14 pure material streams. The new facility is three times as big as the previous one and over the next 9 years it will treat 60,000 tonnes of PMD waste each year, from around 3 million residents. The capacity can be further extended if necessary.

Construction of the sorting hall and installing the machines was completed a few weeks ago, but last week the facility had its first test run with PMD waste. During this phase, which will last until the end of February, all of the machines will be tested and adjusted. This is a vital phase in the process. Each of the machines must be meticulously adjusted to achieve the particularly high grade of purity expected by Fost Plus.  Supplying pure mono-streams is the only way to make high-quality recycling possible in the next step. In the new sorting facility, the PMD will be sorted into 14 separate streams and in time, maybe even more. 

Tight timing

With the introduction of the New Blue Bag in 2019, Fost Plus launched a call for projects for five new high-tech sorting centres to treat the additional PMD waste, approximately 90,000 tonnes extra a year. Indaver’s facility is the first to be up and running and ready to start test runs for treating the New Blue Bag. The timing between the start of the building works and the test run was particularly tight.  Even in these difficult corona times, with local lockdowns, Indaver managed to complete the task within the extremely tight timescales. This build represents an investment of 35 million euros.

 “Manufacturers in the circular economy want to reuse raw materials on the condition that they are just as good and safe as the original material.  We are making this possible and want to set the pace for the sector.” says Indaver CEO Paul De Bruycker. In this new facility we are creating value from the packaging waste that is supplied to us and protecting the materials loop from contamination.  We are thus making the necessary switch from a linear to a circular economy. This modern, high tech facility fits in perfectly with our treatment portfolio to achieve that.”

At least 75% of recycling in-country

In the New Blue Bag, packaging such as salad bags, mushroom containers, or the plastic foil around multipacks of water and milk can now be recycled. The sorted fractions are then taken off for recycling in Belgium and neighbouring countries. Today, 75% of the household packaging waste that Fost Plus collects is recycled in Belgium. With the announcement that three new recycling contracts are being introduced on our own soil, that figure will only increase further over the next few years. 

Good recycling starts with good sorting, says Patrick Laevers, managing director at Fost Plus. “Thanks to a uniform collection system, with uniform sorting messages for residents, we make this as easy as possible for citizens. That way, they can make a concrete contribution to the creation of a circular packaging economy. The opening of this new sorting centre is proof of our highly-effective eco-system. The new technologies that are being integrated, also allow us to look ahead to the packaging mix of tomorrow. This is a great achievement that we are very proud to be a part of." 

Available images?

video images taken in the first week of the launch (14-18 December) are available via link.

About Indaver 

Indaver is a European player in the waste sector with plants and operations in Belgium, the Netherlands, Germany, Portugal, Italy, Ireland and the United Kingdom. Indaver manages and treats industrial and household waste in specialist facilities for the industrial sector, waste collectors and governments. Indaver recovers valuable raw materials and energy from these treated waste streams. Indaver is thus creating value from waste and by doing so is helping to close the materials loop in a safe, low-carbon and energy-efficient manner. This makes Indaver the ideal partner in the pursuit of a sustainable circular economy. In 2019, Indaver had a turnover of 579 million euros with 1700 staff throughout Europe. 
Further information:
Follow us on Twitter (@Indavergroup)

About Fost Plus 

Fost Plus NPO is responsible for the selective collection, sorting and recycling of household packaging waste in Belgium. Through promotion, coordination and financing we provide a concrete realisation of the circular packaging economy. Consequently, we recycle more than 90% of the household packaging on the market each year, thanks to the efficient collection of glass, paper, cardboard and PMD waste. 
Packaging management has resolutely evolved into sustainable materials management. We therefore work closely with all parties involved: businesses, federations, governments, local authorities and intermunicipal companies, collection, sorting and recycling companies and citizens. Fost Plus was set up in 1994 under the supervision of the businesses and is active in three regions. Through our mission, we are meeting the European goals for sustainable waste management. 

Press contacts

Indaver: Inge Baertsoen, Corporate Communication Manager
e-mail Inge Baertsoen – T +32 497 97 05 70
Fost Plus: Valerie Bruyninckx, PR & Corporate Communication Manager
e-mail Valerie Bruyninckx – T + 32 471 75 83 12