True circularity.
Food contact.
Powered by styrenics.
Advances in the closed loop recycling of polystyrene.

Date: 26/11/2020
Start Time: 10:30 am CET
Duration: 2 Hours
Cost: Free

Event Overview

How can circular polystyrene best meet the growing demand for high quality recyclates suitable for food contact applications? What are the achievements so far in fulfilling the intrinsic circularity of styrenics and what are the milestones? Which environmental footprint of the different polystyrene recycling technologies can be expected? How does recycled polystyrene compare with virgin polystyrene in the production process of food packaging?

Styrenics Circular Solutions (SCS), the value chain initiative to increase the circularity of styrenic polymers, together with Packaging Europe, will address these issues in an online event at 10.30am CET on Thursday 26 November. This moderated event with interactive dialogue, presentations and Q&A will feature the following topics:

  • Delivering on the unique circular potential of polystyrene – Jens Kathmann, Secretary-General, Styrenics Circular Solutions.
  • On track with food contact mechanical recycling of polystyrene – Herman Van Roost, General Manager Feedstock & Mechanical Recycling
  • Advances in depolymerisation food contact recycling of polystyrene – Dr. Norbert Niessner, Global Head of R&D, INEOS Styrolution and Chair Technologies, SCS
  • First insights into a comprehensive Life Cycle Analysis for polystyrene – Regino Weber, Research Associate Division Polymers, Neue Materialien Bayreuth GmbH
  • Recycled polystyrene as a drop-in solution – the converters’ perspective – Anabela Ferreira, Co-owner and Executive Board Member, Intraplás; Iain Sturges, Chief Procurement Officer, COEXPAN; Tobias Strasser, Managing Director, Greiner Packaging
  • Circular roadmap for styrenics – a look ahead– Jens Kathmann, Secretary-General, SCS
  • Q&A session

The event will be moderated by Chrissi Schönfelder, Chair of Advocacy & Communications, Styrenics Circular Solutions.

We welcome your questions and we invite you to submit a question in advance by emailing

We look forward to welcoming you and encourage you to register in advance.

Welcome and Event Introduction

Chrissi Schoenfelder

Styrenics Circular Solutions, Chair Advocacy & Communications, Styrenics Circular Solutions

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Delivering on the unique circular value of polystyrene

We are at a breakthrough milestone in styrenics’ contribution to the circular economy. Polystyrene has a unique capacity for full circularity and its inherent properties make it ideal for closed loop food contact recycling. Recycled polystyrene of food grade quality combines all the well-known application, processing and environmental advantages of polystyrene, with the added value of being a fully circular polymer. Out of our portfolio of recycling technologies two are in the spotlight at this event: mechanical recycling and depolymerization. Each of them extends closed-loop food contact recycling beyond PET bottles to new food grade applications and thus make polystyrene an important contributor to the EU’s recycling targets. We are now truly at a stage where we can say, we can go in a closed loop from yoghurt cup to yoghurt cup with recycled polystyrene over and over again. This is excellent news for the market.

Jens Kathmann

Styrenics Circular Solutions, Secretary General

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On track with food contact mechanical recycling of polystyrene

Herman Van Roost

Styrenics Circular Solutions , General Manager Feedstock & Mechanical Recycling

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Establishing food contact depolymerisation of polystyrene in Europe

The depolymerisation of polystyrene has proven to be the perfect marriage of material and recycling technology, proving polystyrene’s unique intrinsic capability for full circularity. The plastics-to-plastics depolymerisation technology converts polystyrene packaging waste directly back into its original liquid monomer, which then can be repolymerised into recycled polystyrene (r-PS), or serve as a recycled monomer building block for other styrenic polymers. r-PS from depolymerisation is identical to the virgin polystyrene and can thus be used in the same high-quality applications even for food contact. With proven technology already in place, plans are underway to build the first-of-its-kind full scale commercial polystyrene recycling plant based on depolymerisation in France, capable of processing up to 50 tons-per-day of post-consumer polystyrene feedstock and expected to be fully operational by mid-2023.

Dr. Norbert Niessner

INEOS Styrolution/ Styrenics Circular Solutions, Global Head of R&D, INEOS Styrolution and Chair Technologies, SCS

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First insights into a comprehensive Life Cycle Analysis for polystyrene

Regino Weber

Neue Materialien Bayreuth GmbH, Research Associate Division Polymers, Neue Materialien Bayreuth GmbH

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r-PS as drop-in solution for virgin polystyrene – the convertors’ perspective

Same abstract for all under this agenda item! For converters, it has been a momentous step to test in the existing facilities whether recycled polystyrene can be used as a drop-in solution in place of virgin polystyrene. Recycled polystyrene, without any equipment changes, behaves equally to virgin polystyrene throughout our entire production process, from extrusion to thermoforming and in form, fill and seal. This drop-in solution is transformative for the circularity of polystyrene and the benefits will be felt all along the value chain.

Anabela Ferreira

Intraplás, Co-owner and Executive Board Member, Intraplás

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Iain Sturges

COEXPAN, Chief Procurement Officer

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Tobias Strasser

Greiner Packaging, Managing Director

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