In an exclusive agreement, Houston-based waste optimization specialist Avangard Innovative LP (AI) will supply post-consumer resin (PCR) plastic film pellets to Dow. According to Dow, this is a significant addition to Dow's plastic circularity portfolio that is aligned with the company's goal to advance the circular economy for plastics and minimize waste in the environment.
The companies expect to begin offering Dow's PCR-based innovations later this year to North American customers who are demanding stronger sustainability profiles in targeted applications, such as liners, shrink wrap and protective packaging, among others. Dow will initially use the PCR from AI to create linear low-density polyethylene (LLDPE) and low-density polyethylene (LDPE) products.
"We’re giving our customers the tools they need to supply consumers with products made from recycled plastic, like the liners they place into their waste bins and the shrink wrap they use to bundle and ship packaged goods," said Victor Zapata, Dow's recycling commercial director for Latin America and North America, in a statement. "This collaboration combines AI's waste collection and sortation technology with Dow's materials science expertise, application expertise and operational scale to bring a consistent processing, reliable supply of PCR-based LLDPE and LDPE to our customers throughout North America."
Delivering circular economy solutions is a key component of Dow's sustainability strategy. By collaborating with AI, the two companies together are driving efforts that ensure the value of plastics is not lost after only one material use.
"Any plastic lost to the environment as waste is unacceptable," said Nestor de Mattos, Dow's North America commercial vice president for packaging and specialty plastics, in a statement. "That's why we're collaborating with AI to advance new solutions that maintain the value of used plastics. Not only does this effort help Dow meet its sustainability goals, it will help our customers reach their own sustainability objectives, furthering the shift toward a circular economy for plastics."
The agreement to supply Dow with PCR to combine with virgin resins and create new LLDPE and LDPE products follows AI's announcement that it is expanding its film collection and sortation next year—facilitated by a second plant in Houston and new plants in Nevada and Mexico.
"The combination of our collaboration with Dow and our planned expansion makes this a very exciting time for Avangard Innovative,” said AI CEO Rick Perez in a statement. "We've built film collection and sortation experience over 35 years, uniquely positioning us to deliver PCR materials that will allow Dow to develop circular products for its customers."
AI has been certified as a minority business enterprise by the Houston Minority Supplier Development Council and the state of Texas.