Paper merchant Ideal Waste Paper has opened its £14m MRF in Swanley, Kent, as it makes the leap into the multi-material market.
The 100,000 tonne capacity per year MRF sorts OCC, news and pams, film, plastic bottles, aluminium and steel cans and glass. Deputy leader of Kent County Council Alex King officially opened the MRF, which will be switched on to begin sorting on 7 March.
Currently, the MRF takes waste from Sevenoaks and Swanley but Ideal Waste Paper is looking to secure further contracts from the surrounding local authorities to fill the plant’s capacity. The paper it sorts is being sent to paper mill Aylesford Newsprint, which is located nearby.
Managing director Kenny Thew said: “I think paper recyclers will have to move into the multi-materials market in future because sorting paper just isn’t enough anymore. But it’s true that building a MRF is a huge jump for a firm to take on and the banks are still cautious about lending to businesses.”
So far, material trials at the MRF have shown it to have 3.17% contamination, which is below the average contamination rate of 5%. Ideal Waste Paper is continuing to work on reducing this rate.
Director Simon Scott added: “Ideal Waste Paper is a family-run business. Our drive is to keep everything in Kent, we’re employing Kent workers and we tried to use Kent-based companies to build the plant and we’re supplying local firms with our materials. Keeping things local is good for the community, it’s important to support it.”