The University of Turku explores ways to promote the circular economy of plastics in plant and horticultural production

Execution time 2023-2029

The University of Turku is involved in PlastLIFE’s work on agricultural and construction plastics.

We will explore the recyclability of plastics used in construction and plant and horticultural production, the possibilities of replacing plastics with other materials, the barriers to the recycling and reuse of plastics and the suitability of recycled secondary plastics for different applications. In addition, we will investigate and make visible the value chain of plastics and the opportunities for creating sustainable business models.

Our goal is to increase the recycling of plastics and the use of recycled plastic materials throughout Finland.

The University of Turku is developing methods to promote the recycling of agricultural netting.
© Veijo Pönni, University of Turku

The work of the University of Turku focuses on plastics used in plant and horticultural production:

Materials research: which end product categories are different plastics suitable for and which recycling/processing methods are suitable for each grade of plastic? In addition, plastics used in agricultural and horticultural production are sent for further examination to determine whether they contain such levels of hazardous substances that may limit or prevent the use of the material altogether.

Value chain review:

1. Current state, problems and change potential, illustration of the value chain and parties involved;

2. Business models and benchmarking to promote the collection and recycling of plastics;

3. Views and recommendations on measures (including legislative changes)

Communication and advice:

  • sustainable use of plastics in agriculture and horticulture, including environmentally responsible use,
  • correct sorting and end-of-life process for the material, reception points and
  • possibilities of replacing plastics
  • Pilots: what is the most sensible way to collect plastics?

In addition, we will explore the possibilities of replacing current plastic grades with bio-based or biodegradable materials in cooperation with Natural Resources Institute Finland and Syke.

Further information on the role of University of Turku in the PlastLIFE project

Published 2023-05-04 at 13:34, updated 2023-09-18 at 15:42
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