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Discover the facts about Polypropylene

29 Apr 2022 —
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Curbing our dependency on plastics is vital. Yet, some new-generation plastic solutions offer eco-driven options suited to certain markets and applications, such as polypropylene. Let's take a look at the facts.

Curbing our dependency on plastics is vital. Yet, some new-generation plastic solutions offer eco-driven options suited to certain markets and applications, such as polypropylene. Let's take a look at the facts.

Polypropylene in the spotlight

Made from a combination of propylene monomers (molecules that can react together), polypropylene is a thermoplastic, which means it becomes pliable at a specific temperature and solidifies upon cooling.

 

Polypropylene is used for various applications including packaging, graphic applications and plastic parts for the automotive industry. Created in 1951, it has become one of the most commonly produced plastics in the world.

 

It's important to understand the sustainability aspect of this material

A viable alternative to thin gauge PVC, polypropylene is one of the most neutral plastics, containing only two elements - carbon and hydrogen - and is free from halogens and plastifiers. The nature of polypropylene (PP) means it is one of the most eco-friendly plastics for the visual communications sector. Polypropylene is a polyolefin material derived from the waste gases of the oil refining process, they are converted to pellets and used in the extrusion of polypropylene sheets. Prior to the invention of polypropylene, these gases would have been burned off into the atmosphere. 

 

Lightweight compared to similar materials, new generation PP is fully recyclable multiple times, without any significant change in its physical properties or performance.

 

Key environmental features and benefits of polypropylene

  • Chemically inert, halogen (chlorine) free 
  • Phthalate (plasticiser) free 
  • Can be burnt without risk of toxic emissions 
  • 35% lighter than PVC - fewer resources used compared to materials of equivalent thickness
  • 100% recyclable, many times over 
  • Easily and commonly recycled 
  • Can be used in closed-loop recycling (e.g Priplak R100, PCR100) 

 

Encouraging eco-responsibility

At Antalis, we understand the need to move away from fossil-heavy materials to recycled, recyclable and fibre-based solutions. Polypropylene is an example of how some types of plastic can sometimes offer a pragmatic, effective and more responsible alternative for visual communication applications. 

 

Focused on easing the transition to more sustainable visual communication, we are committed to exploring new alternatives and growing our range of more eco-friendly materials. Our Green Star System helps customers better understand the environmental impact of materials and easily make informed choices, for the protection of our planet.