New recycling line at Biffa plant set to ‘double output’

Biffa Polymers’ new recycling line at its Redcar plant in Cleveland is up and running, following a £7m investment.

The company, which is part of waste management services provider, Biffa, said the second recycled High Density Polyethylene (rHPDE) line will enable it to “double its ouput” of food-grade rHDPE, from 9,000 tonnes per year to 18,000 tonnes.

The second recycled High Density Polyethylene (rHPDE) line will enable it to “double its ouput” of food-grade rHDPE

According to Biffa Polymers, the Redcar facility operates 24/7, 365 days per year. And, it said as a result of the investment, the facility has been modernised with upgraded materials.

The company explained that the new line, which was officially opened by Biffa CEO Ian Wakelin on 29th March 2017, will create 20 new jobs and provide extra capacity for plastics recycling at a time when the wider plastics recycling industry is “experiencing instability”.


At Redcar, food-grade rHDPE is manufactured from “hot washing, density-separated and super-cleaned raw material”, and compounded into a pellet of agreed specification.

The company said the pellet is used as recycled content in manufacturing plastic milk bottles, plastic food trays for supermarkets, cosmetics containers, and in non-food items such as paint trays and plant pots.

Biffa CEO Ian Wakelin said: “The creation of a new rHDPE line at our Redcar plant will put capacity back into the market to meet the growing demand that we are seeing, which is particularly important given events in the plastics recycling industry.”

(l-r) Biffa CEO Ian Wakelin with Owen Franklin, general manager at Biffa Polymers

“Enabling us to double our output, this investment in our facilities and the additional infrastructure it provides will also mean that more discarded plastic generated by UK households can be processed here in the UK rather than being sent abroad for processing.”


Mr Wakelin added: “We remain committed to continued investment and improvement in our facilities and we are open to exploring possible growth strategies that will enable us to enhance our offering and increase our processing capacity further in future.”

Chris Hanlon, commercial director at Biffa Polymers added: “The new line is a real boost to our leading industry position in plastics recycling, here in the UK.  The investment is also great news for the region, creating a significant number of jobs for local people.”

The bulk of the feedstock for the plant comes from Biffa’s network of materials recycling facilities (MRFs) around the UK. The Redcar site also process mixed-plastic polypropylene waste.

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