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New MDF recycling technology launched

New technology to recover wood fibre from recycled medium-density fibreboard (MDF) waste has completed trials for commercial viability.

Following six years of research and development, MDF Recovery says it could recycle up to 50,000 tonnes of waste each year and provide an alternative to the 350,000 tonnes disposed of in Britain each year.

The company says the recovered fibre is the same quality as virgin, and can be used as a raw material source and provide feedstock to the manufacturers of MDF board and insulation products.

More than 45 million tonnes of MDF are produced globally every year in the furniture, construction and DIY markets, and MDF Recovery claims that 2.7 million tonnes of this could be recycled worldwide.

Managing director Craig Bartlett (pictured), who established MDF Recovery in 2009, said: “The recycling process we have developed is a genuine world first. There is no other environmentally friendly alternative to the use of landfill or burning to dispose of MDF waste.”

He adds that the company is already in discussions with businesses in MDF production and the waste industry.

“Our technology can be retrofitted or designed into new plants. It offers a robust solution for reworking waste and increasing the yield at the MDF manufacturing facility. The financial payback is dependent on the size of MDF plant but, in larger plants, is expected within 18 months,” he said.

Bartlett claims the technology creates a closed loop solution, with manufacturers recycling material back from their customers and that zero waste production is “a real possibility”.

The business been funded by the UK and Welsh Governments, Angel Investor and industrial funding. It has set up an advisory panel which includes members of the MDF and timber industries to help it commercialise the technology.


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