The Waste and Resources Action Programme (WRAP) has awarded the consortium £235,000 to research recycling processes for plastic milk bottles.
There are currently no commercially viable ways of turning UK waste plastic into high-density polyethylene (HDPE) that is allowed to contain food.
A WRAP spokesman said: The project will examine all aspects of the collection, sorting, recycling and reuse of recovered HDPE.
JFC Delleve, which was recently awarded £1 million by WRAP, is one of four UK companies joining firms from Germany, Italy and Austria in the consortium. The Dairy Crest Group has also declared its interest in the project.