Japan Partnership for Circular Economy

Japan Partnership for Circular Economy


Enhanced use of recycled resin

[Company / organization] Panasonic Corporation

To efficiently utilize resin recovered from used home appliances in addition to metals such as iron, copper, and aluminum, our recycling factory, Panasonic Eco Technology Center Co., Ltd. (PETEC), and Kato Plastic Recycling Factory of the Appliances Company work together for resin recycling. Using technologies such as our original near-infrared identification technology, PETEC is capable of sorting shredder residue of waste home appliances into three major types of resins with different purposes and properties—polypropylene (PP), acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS), and polystyrene (PS)—at a material purity of over 99%.

The recycled single resins sorted and recovered at PETEC are then transferred to the adjacent Kato Plastic Recycling Factory to be further purified and processed to recover their chemical properties. Kato Plastic Recycling Factory is a manufacturing and development site that demonstrates promotion of use of recycled resin at our Appliances Company, a home appliance manufacturer and seller. The factory plays an important role in enhancing recycled resin utilization by developing recycling technologies, such as a more efficient method for improving the performance. Generally, resin deteriorates its strength and life over time. This is why its chemical properties have to be recovered to the level of new resin to make them usable as materials and components in new products. Because of the differences in the physical properties required by different products, we have been examining the properties of recycled polypropylene and polystyrene and have developed technologies to create new formulas for resin components, adding our own proprietary antioxidant and mixing recycled resin with new resin.