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New buyer sought for failed plastic recycler

The collapse of a Welsh recycler of plastic bottles has been blamed on the recession - and a lack of material quality.

New buyers are being sought for Plastic Sorting Ltd (PSL), based at Blackwood Business Park, Pontllanfraith, near Caerphilly, which went into administration on 1 February.

Three staff have been retained to advise the administrators Begbies Traynor with 27 others losing their jobs.

David Hill, a partner in the administrators’ Cardiff office, said: “We are continuing to trade the business while we conduct a review of its operations and look for a buyer to take on the business as a going concern.”

PSL, which runs the largest capacity PET (polyethylene terephthalate) reprocessing plant in the UK, had an annual turnover of £1.2m. It buys in empty plastic drinks bottles and sorts, washes and chips them for resale to the plastics industry.

When it was launched PSL was billed as a “strategic investment in the plastic supply chain for Wales, the West Midlands and the West of England”.

The company involves social enterprise and the private sector, with the support of the Welsh Assembly Government and the Charity Bank.

Interested parties have until close of business on 6 February to register an interest.

The Campaign for Real Recycling said PSL was a casualty of the economic climate but it had also been damaged by a lack of material quality.

CRR coordinator Andy Moore said: “The upshot is that poor quality, multi-polymer plastic is collected into a limited domestic market and is typically exported to the Far East, which is of less benefit to the UK economy and job creation.

“This is yet another reason why we are maintaining our vigilance as the government re-transposes the revised EU Waste Framework Directive. We hope that Defra will recognise the importance of supporting the separate collection of dry recyclables, including separate plastics, as this situation illustrates how UK jobs can be affected.”

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