Changes in E Waste Management Highlighted at IERC 2018

Future of Electronics Recycling Discussed at 17th International Electronics Recycling Congress

IERC 2018 closed on Friday 19th January 2018 with a stark warning that changes are needed in the global management of E-waste.  Attending the congress were 480 international experts from 42 countries.

WEEE E WasteBunting Magnetics Europe’s Managing Director, Simon Ayling, was at the congress for the first time.

“All the leading companies and organisations involved in E-waste were present at the congress,” said Simon.  “There was a very honest and open assessment of the present state of the industry, with a focus on what needs to change.”

Many visitors to the Bunting Magnetics stand had issues with separating Stainless Steel.

“Stainless steel is clearly a major issue when processing WEEE.  Up until now, it has been difficult to effectively [physically and economically] extract the stainless steel.  This then causes problems with shredder wear and the contamination of the end product.  With the HISC and SSSC, we have Magnetic Separation solutions for both small and large sized Stainless Steel.”

At IERC 2018, there was a focus on change.  As developing countries introduce tighter restrictions on the shipment of waste in general [EPPM – China raises drawbridge on incoming overseas plastic waste], a more holistic approach is needed.

New technology, like the Bunting Stainless Steel Magnetic Separator, and increased automation were identified as being vital to improve WEEE recycling rates.

Bunting Master Magnets at RWM17

The amount of E-waste is ever-increasing and the shrinking product size is making recycling increasingly difficult.  Rising collection costs and falling value of the end recycled product may lead to more localised e-recycling.  There also needs to be a clear political strategy with a standardisation of regulations.

WEEE E Waste“It was clear that the industry faces a challenging future,” observed Simon.  “Being able to successfully recycle WEEE can be prohibitively expensive and is further complicated with local and global environmental regulations.  Companies involved in processing E-waste are having to continually modify their businesses to survive in an ever-changing industry.  Hopefully, our Magnetic Separation technology will help.”

For further information on Metal Separation including Stainless Steel Recovery and Removal, or to assess the right Magnetic Separator or Metal Detector for a specific application, please contact us on:

Phone: +44 (0) 1442 875081
Email: sales@buntingeurope.com
Via the website

Metal Separation at IERC 2018

Bunting Exhibiting at 17th International Electronics Recycling Congress (17-19 January 2018)

IERC, the first major recycling event of 2018, is being held in Salzburg, Austria between the 17th and 19th of January.  For the first time, Bunting Magnetics will have a stand at the event.

During the 3 day congress, experts from around the world will discuss the latest issues facing the recycling world such as the Chinese ban on plastic waste imports and the continued drive towards electric vehicles.

Bunting Master Magnets at RWM17

Technology is always high on the agenda as new innovations make it possible to recover and separate an increasing number of valuable metals whilst reducing the amount of unusable waste.

Bunting has developed a wide range of Magnetic Separator technology.  Following the acquisition of Master Magnets in January 2017, Bunting is able to provide solutions to separate any metals.

Stainless Steel Separation

Stainless Steel becomes very weakly magnetic when bent or cut (as when passed through a shredder).  Bunting developed two new Magnetic Separators, the High Intensity Separation Conveyor (HISC), and the Stainless Steel Separation Conveyor (SSSC).  Both systems have ultra high magnetic fields that enable the attraction and deflection of Stainless Steel, enabling separation.  Production sized equipment was recently on display the RWM 17 exhibition in the UK.

Non-Ferrous Metal Separation

The Eddy Current Separator remains a vital part of any recycling process, separating and recovering non-ferrous metals.  Master Magnets have a number of Eddy Current Separator configurations enabling the separation of large and very small non-ferrous metals.  In 2017, Master Magnets manufactured and shipped a record number of Eddy Current Separators.  This is as a direct result of companies seeing their equipment’s superior separation capabilities.

General Ferrous Metal Separation

Separating metal at stages is the key to enabling the best recovery and purity of metal.  General Magnetic Separators are commonly used earlier in the process to recovery or remove ferrous metals and include:

Bunting Europe’s Managing Director, Simon Ayling, will be at the congress.  If you have a specific application, please see us on our stand.

In the meantime, for further information on Metal Separation or to assess the right Magnetic Separator or Metal Detector for a specific application, please contact us on:

Phone: +44 (0) 1442 875081
Email: sales@buntingeurope.com
Via the website

 

 

Our 2017 Review

A Look Back at Our News & Blogs from 2017

2017 has been another busy and exciting time for Bunting Magnetics Europe with some great news stories.  In this blog we look back at the past 12 months and review the stories that hit our headlines.

January

bunting_master_magnetsWe started the year by announcing that Bunting had acquired leading UK Magnetic Separator and Metal Detection company Master Magnets.  This changed the Magnetic Separator landscape in Europe.

At the same time, the Bunting team was exhibiting at the Arabplast exhibition in Dubai.  The plastics focused event was attended and visited by plastics professionals across the region.  Sales were even made on the stand!

Our 7th of our 8 Magnetic Separator Myths examined the impossibility of achieving 100% metal separation.

To finish off January, we announced record sales in 2016 despite the backdrop of Brexit and political uncertainty.

February

We started the month with our 8th Magnetic Separator myth, asking if it was possible to block a magnetic field.

Bunting also joined the British Plastics Federation, reflecting our longtime involvement in the sector providing metal separation solutions.

Bunting at Exposolidos 2017

Our exhibition focus in the month was Exposolidos in Spain with our local representative SMED Tecnica.

In February, we also asked the question of whether our Environmental future is simple down to design?  This was written in response to the growing awareness of the environmental impact of waste that would gradually intensify through the year.

We finished off the month with the launch of the Teardrop Tube Magnet, ideal for use in fine powders where bridging might be an issue.

March

The strength of a Magnetic Separator is often expressed in ‘gauss’.  However, the vast majority of people are unable to measure gauss and so we showed a simple practical way to check the magnetic power using a simple spring balance.

Our 9th Magnetic Separator myth highlighted the dangers of strong Magnets and our 10th myth looked at ways to easily and safely clean captured metal off  Magnetic Separators.

We also investigated a US FDA report stating the ‘Ingesting Metal Fragments Can Cause Injury‘.

In March, we exhibited at the Southern Manufacturing and Electronics show in Farnborough UK.

April

Metal is commonly found in spices and we examined a typical plant and identified the best locations for Magnetic Separators and Metal Detectors.

We also reported that we sold a record number of Plate Magnets in 2016 for export to Indonesia and 28 In-Line Magnets to a German baby food producer.

New Bunting Sales EmployeesWith the continued growth of the business, we were thrilled to announce the appointment of two new sales engineers, Tom Higginbottom and Gordon Kerr.

In April, UK supermarket Morrisons was hit by a metal-in-food scare and we looked at how this could have happened and ways in which such a problem could have been prevented.

May

Our Food Safety theme continued in May when, during a metal separation survey, we found large amounts of metal safely captured when processing rice.  Our Perfect Plant review assessed the best methods and equipment location to ensure that metal is removed from Processed Vegetables.

Exports continued to proved successful with the shipment of a HFS Drawer Magnet to a Plastics recycling company in France.

Our technical review in May reviewed the effect of high temperatures on Rare Earth Magnetic Separators.

June

There was a political flavour to news in June after the UK’s general election and we investigated what the leading parties were promising with regards to the environment.  At the same time, Bunting and Master Magnets were jointly exhibiting at Waste 17, a major UK recycling show in Manchester.

The week after, Bunting supported local representative BMS France at the FIP Solution Plastique exhibition in Lyon, France.

To mark the UK’s Food Safety Week, we reviewed recent cases of ‘metal’-in-food’ and the potential implications for the manufacturer, sales outlet, and customer.

July

Denis_Elkins_Bunting_Magnetics_Europe-2176In July, we were thrilled to announce the successful transition to ISO9001 2015 Quality and the ISO14001 2015 Environmental Standards.

In the media there was increasing attention on the issue of plastic waste in the environment and we commented on the necessity of a global strategy for Plastic Waste.

August

The environmental theme continued in August asking if the UK could realistically increase their metal packaging recycling rate by 10% by 2020.

September

As a prelude to RWM17, the UK’s largest waste and recycling show, we looked at 3 UK Waste and Recycling Facts such as asking how much waste do we actually generate?

Bunting Master Magnets at RWM17

After exhibiting at RWM, there were many questions being asked by exhibitors and visitors about the future of the event despite the importance of recycling and the global waste problem.

October

Bunting Magnetics Europe at Interplas 2017

The UK’s leading plastics show, Interplas, is held every 3 years and, as in previous years, it was very well supported by both exhibitors and visitors.  The environmental issues associated with plastic waste was gathering momentum.

Removing metal from fine powders can be extremely difficult and we produced a technical report looking at the best techniques and ideal equipment.

Tom Higginbottom attended the successful Bulk Solids & Powders show SyMas in Poland with the local Bunting representative TEKPRO.

November

The Manufacturing and Engineering industries have been concerned about the lack of young engineers and hopefully initiatives such as Tomorrow’s Engineers Week will help address this issue.

We were also excited to report two consecutive record sales months in September and October.  2017 was proving to be as successful as 2016.

Our latest Perfect Plant review focused on the brewing of beer and ensuring that all metal is removed to protect delicate processing equipment and the taste of the beer.

December

Pantomine BlogThe BBC TV series Blue Planet had highlighted the global problem of plastic waste in our oceans.  However, as the pressure increased on the plastics sector, we asked whether Plastic was the Pantomime Villain of the recycling world?

We hope you have enjoyed reading our news and blogs in 2017.  If there are any topics that you would like reviewed, then please get in touch and send an email to Paul our press officer (press@buntingeurope.com).

For further information on Magnetic Separators or Metal Detectors please contact the Bunting team on:

Review of the Bulk Solids and Powders Industry in Poland

Tom Higginbottom Reports Following Attending the SyMas Exhibition

Last week, our Sales Engineer Tom Higginbottom spent 2-days at the SyMas Bulk Solids and Powders exhibition in Krakow, Poland with Bunting’s local representative, TEKPRO.  Whilst at the show, he gained an insight into the present state of the market and potential opportunities for UK exporters.Bunting_at_SyMas17-17

Tom gives us his insight in the show, local feelings about BREXIT, and the market in general

“SyMas was a really good show with a busy footfall.  There was a lot of equipment on show, from manufacturers based all over the world.

From the type of enquiries and from talking to clients and our distributor, it is clear that the bulk solids and powders sector is growing.  Despite being a member of the EU, Poland remains an emerging nation and wages are still lower than in more developed European countries like the UK, Germany and France, but that gap is closing.  Their skill base is very high and consistently improving.

There is a lot of Western European investment and many of the manufacturing facilities are state-of-the-art.  This matched with the lower wage cost and workforce skills make the Poles very competitive in both European and global markets.

It was interesting speaking with the Poles about the UK leaving the European Union.  Generally, people thought that being a part of the EU makes it possible to compete with larger economies such as China and the USA.  Brexit has introduced an unknown factor and there was a feeling that, without the UK, the EU would have less negotiating power on the world stage.SyMas Tube Magnets 2

I think that the growth of our local representative TEKPRO highlights the expanding market and potential opportunities in Poland.  Since they were founded 10 years ago, they have expanded their workforce from 4 to 84 people.  It is an exciting time and we are working closely with them to maximise our sales potential in Poland.

At the show we received enquiries for both Magnetic Separator and Metal Detectors, including 3 specific projects where clients require Pneumatic Self Clean Drawer Filter Magnets and Drum Magnets.

Attending the SyMas show was really worthwhile and allowed me to gain an insight into the market which simply is not possible without being at the exhibition.

krakow

And Krakow was a beautiful city.  I have never been before and found the people wonderfully friendly and the historical buildings beautiful.”

For further information on removing metal contamination from bulk goods, powders and granules with Magnetic Separators and Metal Detectors please contact us on:

Other relevant Bulk Goods, Powders and Granules Articles

 

Developing Business in Poland at SyMas 2017

Bunting Support TEKPRO at International Trade Fair for Powder & Bulk Solids Technologies in Krakow, Poland

As part of their export business development strategy, Tom Higginbottom from Bunting will be supporting their Polish distributor TEKPRO at SyMas, the powder and bulk solids trade fair in Krakow, Poland (18-19 October 2017).

SyMas is an international exhibition focused on the processing, transport and storage of bulk goods, powders and granules.  TEKPRO are on stand A68.Bunting_at_SyMas17-2

Company TEKPRO Sp. z.o.o. was founded in March 2007 by Danish company TEKEMAS A/S  and the Swiss Dietrich Engineering Consultants sa .  They specialise in providing individual equipment and complete plants to handle and process bulk materials to the Polish market.

“Attending the exhibition and supporting the TEKPRO team is very important,” explained Bunting’s Sales Engineer Tom Higginbottom.  “Being at SyMas allows us to gain an understanding of the market, meeting existing and potential customers, and discussing the industry in general.”

Bunting_at_SyMas17-1TEKPRO will be displaying Bunting FF Drawer Filters and Grate Magnets on the stand.  Tom and the TEKPRO sales team will be giving advice to visitors about eradicating the problem of metal contamination using both Magnetic Separators and Metal Detectors.

“Over the next 2-days it will be great to have an opportunity to get to know the TEKPRO team.  We will also take the opportunity to provide some additional training.  We are really looking forward to the show, and spending time in a very beautiful city,” said Tom.

For further information on removing metal contamination from bulk goods, powders and granules with Magnetic Separators and Metal Detectors please visit the TEKPRO stand at SyMas or contact us on:

Other relevant Bulk Goods, Powders and Granules Articles

Recycling Business Development in France

Bunting Europe and Pronix Talk About Opportunities in the French Recycling and Waste Sector

At the RWM 2017 recycling and waste exhibition (12th – 14th September, NEC, Birmingham, UK), we caught up with Bunting’s Dave Hills (Head of Sales) and Alex Jarosz from the Bunting distributor in France, Pronix.

Pronix has been developing business in France for Bunting Magnetic Separators and Metal Detectors for the past 18 months.  Alex Jarosz has the specific responsibility of developing business in the waste and recycling sectors and had travelled across from France to attend RWM.  We asked why he felt that visiting RWM was important.

Bunting Master Magnets at RWM17

Alex:  “This was the first time since the acquisition that we had the opportunity to meet the Master Magnets team and visit their facility in Redditch.  In the days leading up to the show, I’ve been able to have some product training, which has helped broaden my knowledge and understanding.

Master Magnets have an extensive range of Magnetic Separators and Metal Detectors specifically designed for the recycling and waste sector.  With the acquisition, it is really exciting to be able to offer these to customers in France.”

Alex also explained that he was in the UK to discuss the details of a new metal recycling project.

Alex:  “We are working on a new project where the customer is looking to supply a complete Metal Separation System (Drum Magnet and Eddy Current Separator).  We could all (Pronix, Bunting and Master Magnets) review the project in detail to ensure that what we are proposing is what the customer needs in terms of separation and installation.  The visit has been invaluable.”

We then asked Alex about the state of the recycling and waste sector in France.

Alex:  “In May 2017 we had an election and new government.  This always affects business confidence.  The waste and recycling sector in France has been struggling, with a great deal of restructuring.Bunting Master Magnets at RWM17

However, our new president Emmanuel Macron has put the circular economy and recycling at the heart of our government’s economic model.  In fact, they have stated that they are aiming for the use of 100% of recycled plastics through the economy by 2025 as part of their aim to have a 100% circular economy.  The present recycling rate for plastics is 21% and so we anticipate huge changes and investment in new waste recycling plants.”

We asked Dave Hills about Alex’s visit to the UK.

Dave:  “18 months ago we started working with Pronix to develop business in France.  At the start we had very little, if any, presence in France, but Pronix have steadily changed that.

The acquisition of Master Magnets has significantly expanded our product portfolio and opened up new potential in France.  It is an exciting time.”

Pronix will be exhibiting at Pollutec 2018 (27th – 30th November, Lyon) the next major waste and recycling show in France.

For further information on Magnetic Separators and Eddy Current Separators, please contact us on:

Other relevant waste and recycling articles:

 

Environmental Issues Highlighted at Interplas 2017

Interplas Exhibition Well Supported by Plastics Industry 

On the morning of day 2 of the Interplas 2017 exhibition (26th – 28th September, NEC, Birmingham, UK), BBC Radio 5 Live featured a news item reporting that UK pub operator, JD Weatherspoon, had decided to stop using plastic straws.  This announcement highlighted the challenges facing the plastics sector.

Bunting Magnetics Europe at Interplas 2017

Interplas 2017 is the UK’s premier show for the plastics sector and proved to be a great success.  As experienced at many UK trade exhibitions, the footfall was not as seen at shows in the USA, Germany or other European countries, but the visitors to the Bunting stand had specific metal contamination issues in their plastics production process that needed a solution.

However, plastics and their environmental impact continue to hit the headlines.  Indeed, there were two large posters on the stand of the British Plastics Federation asking:

“As we supply equipment both to companies manufacturing primary plastic products and recycling plastics, we see the problem from both sides,” said Dave Hills, Bunting’s Head of Sales.Bunting Magnetics Europe at Interplas 2017

“Even when manufacturing primary plastics, it has been common and good practice for companies to recycle and reuse their plastic waste for many years.  Indeed, this often necessitates the need for Magnetic Separators and Metal Detectors, removing any rogue metal introduced during this recycling process.”

“However, the real challenge is collecting, processing and then producing a usable plastic product from recovered secondary plastic materials.  Again, we have installed Metal Separation Systems to remove ferrous and non-ferrous metals (eg at Recapture Plastics), but there remain challenges with the end market for the final recycling-sourced plastic product.”

There appears to be a growing appetite for focusing on the issue of plastics in the environment.  The implementation of charges for plastic bags by firstly the Welsh, and then the UK governments may be the first of many initiatives to reduce the use of plastic products.  The latest announcement by JD Weatherspoon about banning plastic straws is expected to be followed by similar announcements by other major coffee shops and food outlets.

At Interplas 2017, the vast majority of the exhibitors were focused on primary plastic production.  With the ever-increasing global focus on environmental issues, we wonder how different the exhibitor and visitor make-up will be at Interplas 2020.

For further information on Magnetic Separators and Metal Detectors for removing metal during the primary plastic production process or in a recycling operation, please contact us on:

 

RWM17 Exhibition Review

Bunting Magnetics Review the UK’s Leading Waste and Recycling Show

On the 12th to 14th September 2017, the focus for the UK’s recycling and waste industry was the RWM 2017 exhibition (NEC, Birmingham).  Bunting Magnetics, along with their acquired business Master Magnets, were demonstrating metal separation on an Eddy Current Separator (for non-ferrous metals) and Stainless Steel Separator.

Bunting’s Dave Hills (Head of Sales) gave us his thoughts on the show:

“We [Bunting and Master Magnets] have come away from the show with some very high quality leads.  In fact, our sales team will be visiting potential customers this week and we are organising urgent tests at our site in Redditch.

The number of visitors to RWM17 appeared to be down on 2016, with day 1 and 3 particularly poorly attended.  The middle day was really busy and this was when we generated the vast majority of the leads.Bunting Master Magnets at RWM17

As in previous years, we had Magnetic Separation equipment operating on the stand to stimulate interest.  And, as usual, our plan was successful with some of the enquiries being a direct result of visitors seeing a large lump of stainless steel being magnetically attracted and separated.  Our ethos of ‘Seeing Is Believing’ was correct and this has now moved onto the next step with the planning of more extensive tests at our Master Magnets plant.

Bunting Master Magnets at RWM17

It was also great to see our Permanent Overband Magnets being displayed on a Terex Ecotech mobile recycling system in the external exhibition area.

Despite the positives, our major concern going forward is that the number of visitors to RWM continue to fall each year.  As openly discussed with exhibitors and visitors, there is a good argument for the show to be held every two-years instead of annually.  Indeed, many German exhibitions are only held every two or even three years.  There are possibly not enough new developments in the waste and recycling sector to justify visitors attending the show every year.  However, despite those concerns, the organisers simply seem intent on an annual show with the announcement of RWM18.

At this year’s show, many exhibitors openly admitted that they would not be attending RWM in 2018.  This continued contraction of the primary exhibition for recycling and waste in the UK is a real concern.  An honest and open review, with input from visitors and exhibitors, is needed.  RWM should be a showcase for the whole waste and recycling industry, but further contraction may put it at risk of closure.

Only in time will we [Bunting and Master Magnets] be able to measure the return on our investment in RWM17, once we been able to visit and speak with visitors and assess how we can help them solve their metal separation problems..

We wish to thank everyone who took the time to visit our stand at RWM17.  Our team enjoyed the show and we will be in contact with you shortly.”

For further information on Magnetic Separators and Eddy Current Separators, please contact us on:

Other relevant waste and recycling articles:

 

3 UK Waste and Recycling Facts

Environmental Facts and Figures For The UK

Next week is RWM, the UK’s largest waste and recycling exhibition, and we thought that it would be interesting to look at some of the present industry facts and figures.

Fact 1 – How Much Waste Do We Generate?

Even though we are in 2017, the latest waste statistics in the UK relate back to data from 2015.  The DEFRA report stated that households generated 26.7 million tonnes of waste in 2015, a fall of 1.1% on 2010.  This equates to 407 kg per person in 2015 compared with 421 kg per person in 2010.

There was also a fall in the generation of Industrial and Commercial Waste between 2010 and 2015.  In 2015, 13.9 million tonnes of Industrial Waste was produced compared with 12.6 million tonnes in 2010.  The fall in Commercial Waste was greater, with 15.1 million tonnes in 2015, down from 20 million tonnes in 2010.

Hanbury Plastics Bunting Overband Magnet-1

Fact 2 – Recycling Rates

The household waste recycling target agreed by the UK Government and the European union is 50% by 2020.  So how are the individual UK nations performing so far?

Fact 3 – Metal Packaging Recycling

The last figures from 2014 show that the total amount of metal packaging waste produced was 736,000 tonnes.  Of this, 428,000 tonnes (58.2%) was recovered and recycled, often using Magnetic Separation technology in the form of Overband Magnets and Eddy Current Separators.  In March 2017, the UK Government set a new target of 69% recycling rate for metal packaging by 2020.

Metal Packaging 2

The facts and figures indicate that changes are needed in the waste and recycling strategy to meet the revised targets.  At RWM it will be interesting to see and meet the companies who are involved in the recycling process, either undertaking the processing of waste or developing equipment to improve recycling techniques.

For further information on Magnetic Separators and Eddy Current Separators for recovering aluminum and steel beverage cans, please visit us on stand 5P80 at RWM 2017 or contact us on:

Other relevant environmental articles:

Bunting Overband Magnet over Conveyor

 

 

Can UK Metal Packaging Recycling Increase by 10% by 2020?

Are Revised Beverage Can Recycling Targets Realistic?

Every year, consumers in the UK use approximately 14 billion steel and aluminium beverage cans.  Of these, approximately 59% are presently recycled.  In the March 2017 budget, the Chancellor, Philip Hammond, announced new targets for 2020, with the metal packaging recycling rate rising to 69%.  We investigate whether this 10% rise is really achievable?

Present Beverage Can Recycling Figures

Bunting Vulcanis-1097Since the late 1980’s, there has been a huge change in the global attitude to waste and recycling highlighted by the fact that, in 1989, the UK’s beverage can recycling rate was just 2%.  Globally, the beverage can is regarded as being the most recyclable packaging for drinks.

By the end of 2017, the UK will be recycling 55% of all aluminium packaging and 76% of steel.  This is part of the 72.7% of all packaging used in the UK that will be recycled.

Using reported recycling rates for aluminium and steel beverage cans, it is estimated that 14.1 billion cans are produced each year, of which nearly 80% are aluminium.  Of the 14.1 billion, 5.8 billion end up in landfill.  It is believed that if all aluminium and steel cans were recycled in the UK, the number of green bins could be reduced by 17.5 million.

The reasons for need to recycle and reduce waste are mainly 3-fold:

  1. Reducing the amount of waste going to landfill;
  2. Reducing the amount of energy used to produce steel and aluminium (recycled aluminium uses 95% of the energy needed for virgin production and steel 75%);
  3. More efficiently using the planet’s dwindling resources;

How Can The New Targets Be Achieved?

Between 2014 and 2017, aluminium can recycling rates have increased by 9% (from 46% to 55%) and steel by 3% (from 73% to 76%).  As recycling rates reach higher levels, previous statistical trends show that the recycling rate growth slows.  The latest recycling targets (2020) are for a further 9% increase (to 64%) in aluminium and a 9% (to 85%) increase in steel.

Additionally, although these may be less relevant due to Brexit, in December 2015 the European Commission proposed targets of 65% of all packaging by 2025 and 75% by 2030.  Of this, the recycling targets for aluminium and steel were the same at 75% in 2025 and 85% in 2030.

These are significant increases in the recycling rates.  From trends over recent years, it is apparent that without significant changes in the way the UK recovers, handles, and recycles materials, the targets set by the UK government and those proposed by Europe will prove difficult to achieve.

Presently, there are several ways in which beverage cans are recovered including:

  1. Charity collection schemes, which commonly only collect aluminium due to the low prices for recovered steel cans.  These only account for a small percentage of all cans recycled;
  2. At designated can banks, where the only subsequent processing is separating steel from aluminium using a Magnetic Separator.  Again, this is a small percentage;
  3. From pre-sorted refuse, where households have segregated ‘recyclable’ waste into separate containers for processing in a Waste Sorting Plant.  This is a more automated system, with steel cans being commonly recovered off a conveyor by an Overband Magnet and aluminium cans either being manually picked or automatically separated using an Eddy Current Separator;Master Magnets Overband Magnet 2
  4. Automatically recovered from mixed waste, using Magnetic Separators and Eddy Current Separators.  The source of the mixed waste includes:
    • Cans incorrectly put in the mixed recyclable rubbish for waste collection by households;
    • Waste collection from city centres;
    • Industrial waste collection;
    • Other waste sources

The challenge for the UK Government is identifying where improvements in can recovery can be made.  Further automation and less reliance on the general public may be required.

The Future

There has been a government focus on recycling and waste reduction since the mid-1990s.  In over 20 years, the aluminium recycling rate was only just exceeded 50%.  The latest recycling targets ask for another 10% growth in just 3 years.Bunting Vulcanis-1098.jpg

Also, given the present infrastructure of waste handling and recycling in the UK, achieving a recycling rate of 85% for any material will be difficult.  Steel Cans have always been a primary recyclable product, but what changes are needed to boost the present rate of 76% up by a further 9% in 3 years when it has only grown by 3% since 2014?

Setting recycling targets is simple, but achieving them without a solid structured plan will be challenging.

For further information on Magnetic Separators and Eddy Current Separators for recovering aluminum and steel beverage cans, please visit us on stand 5P80 at RWM 2017 or contact us on:

Other relevant environmental articles:

Bunting Vulcanis-