Petainer are pleased to announce the recent collaboration with Again, to wash and process refillable PET bottles with their CleanCell® technology. Again are an innovative start up based in the UK, whose mission is to make reusable packaging as affordable and scalable as single use, globally. Again design, install and operate CleanCells®, advanced packaging processing facilities within a shipping container. Again also partner with online grocery retailers to facilitate at-home collections of reusable packaging.
Where their model differs from existing infrastructure is that their technology is deployed in a decentralised way supporting the developing of local circular supply chains. Whether placed close to the point of collection (i.e., a retailer distribution centre), or at FMCG production facilities, they allow for the efficient processing and reuse of packaging. CleanCells® were initially designed to process glass bottles, cleaning, drying and inspecting bottles to prepare them for redistribution and refill. With Petainer, they have expanded that to be able to process returnable PET bottles, which have different processing requirements to refillable glass. Again can now process returnable PET to a quality level equal to that which is expected of by current Petainer refillable customers.
Petainer’s expertise in refillable PET bottles exceeds 30 years and therefore believe in the refillable model as both a more sustainable packaging solution and a way to reduce plastic waste in the environment. Refillable packaging has been shown to reduce the amount of plastic litter (German collection rates are as high as 98%) through a combination of the investment from the producer in retrieving their packaging, and for the consumer to retain their deposits (added to returnable bottles to encourage return). Running alongside a single use system, Petainer has found it offers benefits to the overall packaging system. Where there are not currently nationally run systems, Again can step in to provide the foundations for refillable supply chain.
Craig Pope, Commercial Director EMEA says “Refillable bottles are set to make a comeback in 2023 and beyond. Once ubiquitous, many brands shifted to single use bottles to save on costs. What Again can provide is a low-cost option for producers to return to or start filling in refillable bottles. Again present an exciting, scalable opportunity to many fillers, removing a substantial amount of cost from entering the refillable space, removing the need for investment in washing machines, inspection machines and space to hold them. We’re delighted that they have been able to adapt their technology to support refPET as well as refGlass, as we know that PET, being more lightweight, is cheaper and more carbon efficient to transport. We can see in Europe that legislation on refillables is being formed, and we encourage brands to begin exploring refillable solutions. We’re pleased to continue working with Again as they expand into markets Petainer has experience in; Western Europe and the Americas.”
Brian, Chief Partnerships Officer for Again commented “We are excited to offer more packaging options to brands to shift into reusable beverage packaging by using Petainer’s refillable PET bottles.”