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VDMA interview on chemical recycling of plastics

Dr. Matthias Scheibitz of BASF would like to see politicians take a "leap of faith" in the new chemical recycling processes.


As part of its interview series "Lets talk about Chemical Recycling," the VDMA Plastics and Rubber Machinery Association spoke with Dr. Matthias Scheibitz, Head of Sustainability Strategy Performance Materials at the chemical company BASF, about requirements for the legal framework and the accusation of material competition, among other topics. In an interview with the VDMA, Scheibitz emphasized that politicians need to take a leap of faith in the new chemical recycling processes. In the expert's view, reliable legal frameworks are crucial to ensure that the chemical industry, which according to figures from Plastics Europe plans to invest just over €7 billion in chemical recycling by 2030, can make these investments to develop chemical recycling. Scheibitz cites the greatest possible openness to technology as a key requirement for the legal framework. Chemical recycling must also be recognized in the regulatory framework for the mechanical recycling quota, he said. If, for example, a recycled content of 30 percent is required for packaging, chemical recycling should be recognized, explains Scheibitz. As for the accusation that BASF, as a manufacturer of complex industrial plastics, was taking input away from mechanical recyclers when it comes to recycling simple polyolefins, Scheibitz counters that the waste mountain from plastic packaging is so huge that there should be enough raw materials for everyone and emphasizes that chemical recycling should complement mechanical recycling, not replace it.
You can read the full interview on the VDMA website.


  • Pressrelease VDMA (July 20, 2023)
  • Photo: © BASF SE

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