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O-I opens recycled glass processing centre

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December 17, 2013

A recycled glass processing facility in Portland will use advanced technology and equipment to make more recycled glass available to be remade into sustainable glass bottles and jars.

Glass to Glass is a joint venture formed by Owens-Illinois (O-I) and eCullet, a technology-based recycled glass processing company.

City and state officials as well as members of the business and recycling community attended a ribbon cutting and grand opening event recently at the Glass to Glass facility in Portland, Oregon.

The Glass to Glass facility will supply recycled glass to the O-I Portland plant located just a few miles away.

O-I and eCullet announced the joint venture earlier this year and began construction of the Glass to Glass facility in June. The construction supported approximately 75 jobs and the facility will employ 15 people.

O-I's Portland plant employs about 200 people and produces more than one million bottles per day, primarily beer bottles for local microbreweries.

Every 10% of recycled glass used in the manufacturing process reduces energy costs by 2-3% and greenhouse gas emissions by 4-10%. However, it is sometimes challenging for glass manufacturers to get the high-quality recycled glass they need.

Much of the recycled glass collected in North America comes from single stream recycling, which mixes paper, metal, plastic and glass. This collection process often results in glass that is too contaminated to be successfully re-introduced into the manufacturing process.

One of the reasons that O-I and eCullet chose Portland as the site for their joint venture Glass to Glass facility is the steady supply of high-quality recycled glass available through the Oregon Container Deposit Program.

The Glass to Glass facility will also process recycled glass from Washington that may have otherwise ended up in a landfill.