Circular economy

ALPLA has set itself the goal of being the most sustainable packaging manufacturer and is very much committed to realising the four Rs:

  • Reduce
  • Reuse
  • Recycling
  • Replace

Reduce – simply less

Reduced material usage means less CO2e consumption. Wherever possible, we therefore only ever use as much input material as is necessary to produce new packaging. We continue to optimise the development of ultralight packaging that requires less and less materials for its production, thereby significantly reducing the proportion of CO2e attributable to packaging.

Ultralight bottles have a very low tare weight and this conserves valuable resources, saves energy and costs related to logistics and transport, and cuts CO2e emissions.

Reuse – the beauty of use

Plastics are just as reusable as other packaging materials. The longer they can be kept in the loop in their original form, the better it is for the climate. We therefore continuously optimise aspects such as production of and the attributes of plastic bottles so that they can be incorporated into established reuse systems like the KHS system and the deposit cycle of Genossenschaft Deutscher Brunnen (GDB).


We engage in ongoing dialogue with partners in the beverage industry to develop containers that can withstand the challenges and strains of the reuse system. The results are striking – we can already have a bottle go through the deposit cycle up to 25 times, which equates to an increase of 2,400 per cent.

Recycling – valuable and truly circular

Plastic is a recyclable material. Plastic packaging is therefore anything but waste – it is a valuable resource. The production of virgin PET bottles accounts for the largest proportion of resource consumption and carbon emissions. And if these bottles are then incinerated after use, they cause a high carbon emission load once again. What’s more, the material has then been irrevocably disposed of. Our overarching objective is therefore to keep as much plastic as possible in the recycling loop, process it into what’s known as rPET and use this to produce new packaging. The same principle is also applied to HDPE.


Design for recycling

Recycling is not only a technical challenge – it is also a question of design. It takes foresight to be able to feed packaging back into the recycling loop in a targeted way. The colour, material mix and processing are important parameters that influence the recyclability of PET plastics. With these parameters, we can pave the way for a long life in the recycling loop before packaging is newly produced.


More on the topic of recycling

Replace – the future of packaging materials

Not all plastics are alike. As a technology leader in the area of packaging materials, we are constantly developing new input materials that avoid CO2e emissions and conserve resources.

In collaboration with various partners, we are developing

alternative input materials to be used for the packaging of the future, for example on the basis of cellulose, sugar cane and sunflower seed hulls.


To foster this development in the long term, we are investing in research on and the development of packaging materials which are quite literally grown to rise to the challenges of our times. This is our innovation aspiration.