Aldi using AI to track flexible plastic packaging recycling

Aldi is using artificial intelligence (AI) to track the journey of flexible plastic packaging collected from the public via front-of-store collection points.

The eco2Veritas AI-powered system, developed by Greenback Recycling Technologies, tracks and certifies the amount of flexible plastic collected, shows how much of it is sorted and into which polymers, and how much is reprocessed and into what end products.

When the flexible plastic is certified as recycled by the AI system, the discount grocer receives funding from the Flexible Plastic Fund (FPF), which supports the recycling.

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This month, Aldi received its first certificate generated by eco2Veritcas which confirmed 62 tonnes of in-scope Polyethylene and 25 tonnes of in-scope Polypropylene were recycled.

The material was collected over several months in 2023. Additional volumes are expected to undergo certification in the weeks ahead.

The grocer currently collects around 300 tonnes of post-consumer flexible plastic packaging per year.

Aldi UK packaging director Luke Emery: “We are committed to tackling plastic waste. We know this is an issue that matters to our customers too, which is why we’re working with the Flexible Plastic Fund to further improve the recycling of flexible plastics collected in our stores.”

Last year, Aldi partnered with recycling technology company Polytag to trace materials processing in its supply chain more extensively.

Invisible UV tags send data to Aldi’s Biffa Teeside recycling centre using scannable QR codes, which allows the retailer to track an item’s journey through the process and accurately calculate the quantity of its packaging that is actually recycled.



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