The EFSA Panel on Food Contact Materials, Enzymes and Processing Aids (CEP) assessed the safety of the recycling process Ambiental de Plasticos Recyclapet (EU register number RECYC304), which uses the Vacurema Prime technology. The input is hot caustic washed and dried poly(ethylene terephthalate) (PET) flakes mainly originating from collected post-consumer PET containers, with no more than 5% PET from non-food consumer applications. The flakes are heated in a batch reactor (Step 2) under vacuum and then treated at higher temperature in a continuous reactor (Step 3) under vacuum before being extruded into pellets. Having examined the challenge test provided, the Panel concluded that Steps 2 and 3 are critical in determining the decontamination efficiency of the process. The operating parameters to control the performance of these steps are temperature, pressure and residence time. It was demonstrated that this recycling process is able to ensure that the level of migration of potential unknown contaminants into food is below the conservatively modelled migration of 0.1 μg/kg food. Therefore, the Panel concluded that the recycled PET obtained from this process is not of safety concern when used at up to 100% for the manufacture of materials and articles for contact with all types of foodstuffs, including drinking water, soft drinks, juices, tea, milk, oil, alcoholic beverages and other food products, for long-term storage at room temperature or below, with or without hot fill. The final articles made of this recycled PET are not intended to be used in microwave and conventional ovens and such uses are not covered by this evaluation.
- Ambiental de Plasticos Recyclapet SAS
- food contact materials
- poly(ethylene terephthalate) (PET)
- recycling process
- safety assessment
- Vacurema Prime