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Herbold Meckesheim open waste film decontam plant in Johannesburg

Herbold Meckesheim, a German recycling specialist, has opened a large plant to recycle heavily contaminated polyethylene film in Johannesburg, South Africa, to process up to 8,000 tons per year of film, used big bags and similar waste.

The plant in Germiston South will accept bales of pre-sorted, shredded and foreign waste, to be separated by a pre-washing unit in which also a first washing takes place.

Contaminations are dissolved in a wet granulator under intensive friction and a subsequent friction washer separates the dirty water from the product.

A hydro cyclone separates foreign plastics and specifically heavy contaminations from the target fraction. This separation process has a particularly high separation effect and ensures the high quality of the produced film flakes.

In two drying steps, centrifugal dryer and hot air dryer, the product reaches a residual humidity which is suitable for the further material processing to pellets in a downstream extruder. After the decontamination, high quality recycled film can be made.


Charles Müller (Managing Director) and Deon Swart (Technical Manager) in front of the HERBOLD plant.

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This project has received funding from the European Union Seventh Framework Programme (FP7/2007-2013) under grant agreement n° [310187].