Ho Chi Minh City’s first plastic bottle recycling machine was installed and put into operation at an Annam Gourmet food and grocery store in Thu Duc City on Wednesday.
The machine allows people to recycle plastic bottles on site. After receiving the bottles, the machine separates bottle caps, bottles, and labels before grinding them into pieces of rPET (recycled polyethylene terephthalate).
The process includes just three steps. Comparatively, other machines require 11 steps.
With the new machine, once the container of rPET pieces is full, the equipment will automatically issue a notice. These pieces will be later used to manufacture new products.
Max Craipeau, strategy director at Botol Vietnam, the producer of the machine, said the machine will significantly reduce difficulties in the transport of used plastic bottles, specifically lowering the number of trucks needed for carrying the same volume of plastic waste from 10 to one, thus shrinking carbon emissions and contributing to achieving Vietnam’s net-zero emission goal.
After recycling plastic bottles, users can play a game on the machine for the opportunity to win vouchers of up to VND2.5 million (US$102.3) which can be used at Annam Gourmet.
|A customer experiences the plastic bottle recycling machine at an Annam Gourmet store in Thu Duc City, Ho Chi Minh City. Photo: Gia Han / Tuoi Tre
Botol Vietnam will install an additional seven such machines in Ho Chi Minh City in the near future. The company plans to increase the number to over 100 at supermarkets and universities nationwide by early 2024.
In Southeast Asia, only three PET bottles are recycled for every 10 bottles used. The remaining seven bottles are discharged into the sea and living environment, said Craipeau.
The rate is nine out of 10 bottles in Germany and Japan.
According to Craipeau, plastic recycling machines are popular in Europe. However, these machines have not taken off in Southeast Asian countries, especially Vietnam, due to limitations in transport and the environmental pollution level in the region over the past three decades.
As a result, Botol Vietnam launched its plastic recycling machine in Vietnam to support the used PET bottle collection and recycling.