A newly formed, plastics recycling consortium with nearly 75 years of combined experience recovering, processing and marketing waste resource materials says that the solution to the alarming problem of global plastics pollution can be found right here in Canada.
Canadian plastics recycling veterans and entrepreneurs Tony Moucachen and Emmie Leung have combined the significant market presence of their three extended plastics processing and recycling companies, Merlin Plastics Group, ReVital Polymers, and Emterra Group, to launch North America’s largest plastics recycling consortium – Circular Polymers Group (CPG).
These companies currently operate 38 multi-materials handling and recycling facilities in British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Ontario as well as in Oregon, California and Michigan in the United States. In 2017, this group collected and recycled well over 136 million kilograms of plastics from residential curbside recycling systems, beverage container deposit-return systems and the Industrial, Commercial and Institutional sectors across Canada and the USA.
This recycling activity is backed by $300 million of installed capital and supports 1,500 jobs that drive a growing circular economy for plastics.
“While each of our companies will continue to do business individually, we’ll be working synergistically to offer our customers the combined knowledge of 75 years of recycling expertise, state-of-the art technology, and solutions-oriented, strategic thinking. Circular Polymers Group is a consortium company that is truly greater than the sum of its parts,” Moucachen says.
CPG believes that with its 2018 presidency of the G7, Canada has the opportunity to lead global change on how plastics are valued, used, recovered, reused and recycled.
“Canada has the knowledge and the tools to make change happen now,” Leung says. “As a starter, the Canadian government can assist developing countries in tailoring regulatory approaches that require consumer product companies to take responsibility for recycling their waste plastic packaging and products. It can assist in the transfer of Canadian technologies to collect, sort and recycle plastics. We have the best of the best recyclers right here in Canada. Implemented in developing countries, this combination of policies and best practice will dramatically reduce the eight million tonnes of plastics discharged to the world’s oceans every year.”
Under Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR), producers such as consumer product companies, whose products and packaging end up as waste, must ensure recycling of those wastes. In turn, the demand for more effective recycling technology drives the development of innovative plastics sorting, improves traditional mechanical processing, and supports emerging technologies like chemical recycling that converts plastic resins to original molecules. As a result, in provinces like British Columbia, a wide range of plastics are collected and recycled back into food and beverage packaging as well as non-food packaging, consumer goods and durable products such as automotive parts.
“We have created hundreds of recycling jobs just to address a tiny fraction of the available waste plastics in North America. We still have a long way to go towards zero plastic waste. British Columbia, Canada has the most effective EPR implementation in North America. Working with producers there, we have designed, built and operated efficient and innovative packaging collection, sorting and recycling systems and created new end markets for these recycled materials that have eliminated the need to export plastic waste for recycling. This is a tremendous resource for any government looking to achieve real change in diversion best practices,” Moucachen said.
Leung points out: “The bulk of the plastics entering the world’s oceans comes from a handful of countries such as Indonesia, the Philippines, Vietnam, Sri Lanka, Egypt, Thailand and Malaysia. By adapting the regulatory model for EPR that is emerging in Canada, these countries could aggressively address the ocean plastic pollution problem, reduce greenhouse gases associated with plastic production and disposal and drive local economic development that converts plastic waste into circular economy jobs.”
About Circular Polymers Group
The principals of Circular Polymers Group are:
Tony Moucachen, President of Merlin Plastics Group and ReVital Polymers Inc.
Emmie Leung, Chief Executive Officer of Emterra Group and ReVital Polymers Inc.
Forty-two years ago, Emmie Leung, an immigrant woman from Hong Kong, established a fledgling company that grew to become Emterra Group. It was among the first businesses in North America dedicated to recovering resources from post-consumer products and packaging. www.emterra.ca
Tony Moucachen, a Lebanese immigrant, started Merlin Plastics Group a few years later. It is now one of the largest plastics recycling companies in North America supplying recycled plastics to multi-national producers of products and packaging. www.merlinplastics.com
Today, these affiliated companies, Emterra Group (headquartered in Burlington, Ontario), Merlin Plastics Group (headquartered in Delta, British Columbia) and ReVital Polymers Inc. (headquartered in Sarnia, Ontario), represent the entrepreneurial energies of two Canadians who saw waste materials differently – something to be recovered and used continuously in a circular economy. Together, they have been able to grow these resource recovery businesses into one of North America’s largest post-consumer plastics collection and recycling enterprises – a testament to Canada as an open society that fosters opportunity, inclusivity, and encourages technological innovation.
ReVital Polymers Inc., one of Canada’s largest plastics recycling company that is located in Sarnia, Ontario says that black plastics collected in recycling programs are an important resource and feedstock for its recycling business. ReVital’s customers use recycled black plastic to manufacture products such as new automobile parts and household goods like containers and shelving.
ReVital is Canada’s first recycling plant that combines a Container Recovery Facility and a Plastics Recovery Facility under one roof. The process of transforming incoming mixed plastic bales into recycled plastic pellets takes less than 25 minutes to complete. ReVital plans to expand the range of materials it accepts from recycling programs next year. Clients in the household goods, construction and automotive sectors purchase ReVital’s recycled plastic pellets to make a range of new products.
“No one I know thinks it’s right to use a plastic product or package once and then send it to the landfill,” said Keith Bechard, ReVital’s Chief Commercial Officer. “In Ontario alone, about 1,405 tonnes of black plastics are generated annually. That would fill more than 70 transport trucks parked end-to-end stretching for 1.7 kilometers. That is a significant amount of valuable material and that’s why we invested in the technology to recover black plastics.”
Bechard said recent Toronto media reports claiming that black plastic trays and containers are unrecyclable have caused great confusion for the public, not just in Ontario but across Canada.
“The Toronto media reports were specific to that community’s recycling program and their recycling service provider,” he said. “The City and their service provider’s limitations are not reflective of the rest of the recycling industry in Ontario and Canada.”
In fact, municipalities across the province of Ontario and beyond, including Ottawa, Kingston, Durham and Windsor, have been shipping mixed plastics to ReVital’s 188,000-square-foot plastics recycling operation since it opened in February 2017.
Bechard said the market for black recycled plastics is strong.
“In fact, we turn most of these high value materials into customized and highly engineered resins that are tailored to specific customer end-use applications. This customized approach ensures ReVital improves recovery rates for end-of-life products and packaging, extends material value and utility, and allows our automotive and consumer household product customers to manufacture new products that incorporate recycled content,” he said.
ReVital Polymers Inc., Canada’s first recycling facility that combines a Container Recovery Facility (CRF) and a Plastics Recovery Facility (PRF) in one location held its official opening on Friday, October 20. The Sarnia facility is now one of the newest and most advanced plastics recycling and recovery plants in North America.
Among the dignitaries on hand to help launch the new facility were Arthur Potts, MPP (Beaches-East York) and Parliamentary Assistant to Ontario’s Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change; Michael Bradley, Mayor of the City of Sarnia; Bob Bailey, MPP (Lambton-Sarnia); and Carol Hochu, President and CEO of the Canadian Plastics Industry Association. ReVital owners Tony Moucachen, President, and Emmie Leung, CEO, welcomed more than 60 guests.
ReVital stands out from other plastic recyclers in the industry, said Ms. Leung.
“ReVital’s proprietary process incorporates state-of-the-art technology that sorts and converts waste plastics into discrete resin types that are then tailored to specific customer end-use applications. The difference between us and other plastic recyclers is that our resins can be used in high-end, high-value applications, like new plastic bottles and containers, household consumer products and automotive parts, as compared to drain pipes and plastic lumber, which are typical end-uses of recycled plastic,” Leung pointed out.
ReVital is part of Ontario’s clean technology industry, contributing to Sarnia’s and the province’s green economy.
President Tony Moucachen said ReVital “contributes to the provincial goal of creating a circular economy as well as reducing greenhouse gas emissions by meeting demand for post-consumer and post-industrial engineered recycled resin.”
He said that through its customized approach, ReVital “improves recovery rates for end-of-life products and packaging, extends material value and utility through better end-of-life management and allows manufacturers and retailers to offer new products that incorporate recycled content.”
In operation for under a year, the ReVital facility is already a commercial success. It has the capacity to meet the plastics recycling needs of central Canada as well as the mid-west of the US, bringing recovered resources back to Canada to add value to Canada’s recycling industry and local economy.
Leung and Moucachen, well-known veterans in the paper products and packaging recycling industry, formed a partnership last year to acquire the 180,000-square foot recycling facility located on Lougar Avenue.
They made considerable investments, adding state-of-the-art processing equipment, including optical sorters that use an infrared technology to “read” material types and sort them into discrete resin categories for further washing, grinding, formulation and extrusion.
Tony Moucachen is the founder and President of Merlin Plastics Group, a pioneer of the North American plastic packaging recycling and remarketing industry. He started Merlin Plastics in 1987 and today, it serves customers throughout Canada and the USA, processing rigid and flexible plastic packaging for remanufacturing into new products. Merlin Plastics has made substantial achievements in research, development and commercialization and obtained FDA approvals for its recycled polyethylene terephthalate (PET) and polypropylene (PP) resin.
Emmie Leung is the founder and CEO of Emterra Group, which employs more than 1,100 people through four divisions across Canada and in the US State of Michigan. Emterra offers municipal and industrial, commercial and institutional (ICI) customers a fully integrated approach to collecting, processing and marketing recyclables, organic waste, waste, and scrap tires and offers secure product destruction. The company annually markets more than 500,000 tonnes of recyclables and has more than 30 facilities, including six state-of-the-art single stream recycling facilities and a facility that converts liquid waste into ethanol. Emterra is one of Canada’s most progressive users of alternative green fleet technologies, with 35 per cent of its fleet powered by compressed natural Gas (CNG) and a network of four CNG fuelling stations.
Merlin Plastics Group and Emterra Group are business partners in another venture that provides end-of-life management services for recyclable materials collected in British Columbia’s Recycle BC extended producer responsibility program for packaging and printed paper.
As a clean technology company, ReVital Polymers Inc. is contributing to Ontario’s transition to a circular economy. Recently opened and centrally located in the City of Sarnia, Ontario, ReVital is the first facility in Canada, and one of the newest and most advanced recovery facilities in North America, that combines a Container Recovery Facility (CRF) and a Plastics Recovery Facility (PRF) in one location.
It is a stable, dependable end-market for plastic packaging and products recovered in municipal and industrial, commercial and institutional (ICI) recycling programs in Ontario, across Canada and throughout the USA. Its sister CRF, located in New Westminster, British Columbia, represents more than $20 million in new investment and is the cornerstone of that province’s extended producer responsibility program (via Recycle BC) for packaging and printed paper (PPP). These are the only two CRFs in Canada.
ReVital’s proprietary process incorporates state-of-the-art technology that sorts and converts recovered plastics into discrete resin types, tailored to specific customer end-use applications. This customized approach ensures ReVital improves recovery rates for end-of-life products and packaging, extends material value and utility through better end-of-life management and allows manufacturers and retailers to offer new products that incorporate recycled content.
ReVital also recycles the entire spectrum of paper and metal that is part of plastic packaging. This fully integrated system closes the recycling loop and provides a viable domestic market in North America that is critical as traditional overseas markets shrink in the wake of China’s National Sword announcement, which proposes a ban on imports of 24 categories of recovered waste resources.
ReVital is owned and operated by two circular economy pioneers, Emmie Leung and Tony Moucachen.
Emmie is the founder and CEO of Emterra Group, a national leader in waste resources management that annually markets more than 500,000 tonnes of recyclables. Headquartered in Burlington, Ontario, Emterra offers municipal and ICI customers across Canada and in the State of Michigan an integrated approach to collecting, processing and marketing recyclables, organic waste, liquid waste, waste and used tires. Emterra has more than a dozen material recovery facilities, including a secure waste liquid processing plant in Hamilton that generates a closed loop, industrial grade ethanol. Emterra is one of Canada’s most progressive and largest users of cleaner-running compressed natural gas trucks. www.emterra.ca
Tony is the founder and president of Merlin Plastics Group that is headquartered in Delta, British Columbia. Merlin is a well-recognized veteran of the North American plastic packaging recycling and remarketing industry. Serving customers throughout Canada and the USA, Merlin processes industrial and post-consumer rigid and flexible plastic packaging through its network of plants in British Columbia, Alberta, Oregon and California and has obtained two FDA-approvals for post-consumer resin PET flake for food contact in consumer food packaging applications. www.merlinplastics.com
March 23, 2017
Waste resources and recycling industry veterans Tony Moucachen and Emmie Leung have announced the name of their Ontario-based plastic packaging recycling company – ReVital Polymers Inc. – and unveiled a new website, revitalpolymers.com.
Ms. Leung and Mr. Moucachen formed a partnership last summer to acquire the assets of Entropex including a 180,000-square foot recycling facility located in Sarnia, Ontario to form ReVital Polymers Inc. ReVital recovers post-consumer and post-industrial plastics and processes these materials into discrete resin types, tailoring them to specific customer end use applications.
“Our process allows us to customize production to meet the specific needs of our customers, contributing to more sustainable products made from recycled content,” Moucachen said. He noted that ReVital recycles the entire spectrum of product package including paper and metal, integrating it into the reverse supply chain that feeds the development of new products and packaging.
A key driver of the new company is its commitment to the circular economy. Leung said ReVital is “offering programs and services that will improve recovery rates for producers and increase material value through better end-of-life management. Our high quality post-consumer recycled resins generate greater economic and environmental returns on the three levels of materials management – for consumers, the economy and the environment.”
Tony Moucachen, founder and President of Merlin Plastics Group, is a pioneer of the North American plastic packaging recycling and remarketing industry. He started Merlin Plastics in 1987 and today, Merlin Plastics serves customers throughout Canada and the USA, processing industrial and post-consumer rigid and flexible plastic packaging. Merlin Plastics and Emterra are business partners in another venture that processes and markets recyclable materials collected in British Columbia’s Multi-Material British Columbia (MMBC) extended producer responsibility program for packaging and printed paper.
Emmie Leung is the founder and CEO of Emterra Group, which employs more than 1,100 people through four divisions located across Canada and in the State of Michigan, USA. Emterra offers municipal and industrial, commercial and institutional (ICI) customers a fully integrated approach to collecting, processing and marketing waste, recyclables, organic waste, and used tires and offers secure product destruction. The company annually markets more than 500,000 tonnes of recyclables and has more than a dozen material recovery facilities, including five state-of-the-art single stream recycling facilities featuring advanced recycling technology such as packaging and paper optical sorters. Emterra is one of Canada’s most progressive users of alternative green fleet technologies, with 35% of its fleet powered by Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) and a network of four CNG fuelling stations.
March 1, 2017
(Announced October 16, 2016)
Two veterans of the North American consumer packaging recycling industry, Emmie Leung and Tony Moucachen, announced today they have formed a partnership to purchase the assets of Entropex, a Canadian company based in Sarnia, Ontario. Entropex processed post-consumer rigid plastic packaging for the manufacturing of new, sustainable consumer and automotive products.
Entropex has been in receivership since July 14, 2016. President Keith Bechard said in a statement issued at the time that despite best efforts, the company had “struggled to meet financial challenges caused by the dramatic decline in oil prices and the very competitive business environment.”
A court-appointed receiver, MNP Ltd. of London, Ontario, had been seeking a buyer. The court announced approval of the Leung-Moucachen purchase proposal today.
Leung and Moucachen said they will restart the company in a staged manner and with a new name that will reflect a fresh vision and mission.
Their vision for the new company is to create sustainable, post-consumer, plastic material products that contribute to the circular economy by preserving their utility and value over their extended lifecycle.
“Our aim will be to create products that help our customers – producers and brand owners –achieve the best possible environmental outcomes that result in cost efficient end-of-life product management,” Moucachen said.
Leung said it will be a challenge to turn the company around but that she and Moucachen are committed to revitalizing the business and bringing green economy jobs back to the Sarnia area.
“We understand the need to develop and deliver programs and services to customers to improve recovery and value throughout the reverse supply chain. We’ll be taking a long look at how we can provide effective, sustainable and responsible solutions to plastics recycling that maximize the value of the recovered materials in closed-loop cycles,” she said.
Tony Moucachen is the founder and CEO of Merlin Plastics Group. A pioneer in North America in plastic packaging recycling and remarketing, he started the company in 1987. Today, Merlin Plastics serves customers throughout Canada and the USA, processing industrial and post-consumer rigid and flexible plastic packaging. Merlin Plastics and Emterra are business partners in another venture which processes and markets recyclables collected in British Columbia’s Multi-Material British Columbia (MMBC) extended producer responsibility program for packaging and printed paper.
Also a recognized pioneer in the waste resources and recovery industry, Emmie Leung is founder and CEO of Emterra Group. It employs more than 1,000 people through four divisions located across Canada and in the State of Michigan, USA. Now celebrating its 40th anniversary, Emterra offers municipal and industrial, commercial and institutional (ICI) customers a fully integrated approach to collecting, processing and marketing waste, recyclables, organic waste, used tires and secure product destruction. The company annually markets more than 500,000 tonnes of recyclables and has more than a dozen material recovery facilities, including five state-of-the art single stream recyclables processing facilities featuring the most advanced recycling technology such as packaging and paper optical sorters. Emterra is one of Canada’s most progressive users of alternative green fleet technologies, with 35% of its fleet powered by Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) and a network of four CNG fuelling stations.
Creating high value re-manufactured plastic products for the commercial, industrial, agricultural and automotive industries. We focus on increasing the plastics value chain, diversion, energy reduction and sustaining our environment.
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