Plastic waste turns into yarn and fiber

BURSA, Turkey (AA): A textile firm in Turkey’s prominent industrial center Bursa, south of Istanbul, daily produces five tons of yarn from plastic bottles, the firm’s general director said on Wednesday.

“As a result of our long-standing research and development project, we have become the first plant in Turkey that produces yarn 100 percent from recycled plastic bottles,” Erman Iliman told Anadolu Agency.

He noted that the firm produced internationally-accredited and certificated yarn in its plant.

Iliman said this kind of yarn could not be produced using conventional methods. “This is a feat of process engineering; we have used self-developed know-how to transform plastic waste into fiber and yarn.”

Plastic bottles are collected from several locations, such as schools, hospitals, hotels and various institutions, and processed by the firm.

“Our daily production capacity is five tons of yarn, and we want to raise it to 20 tons by 2019 and 40 tons by 2020,” said Iliman, adding that they processed 200 tons of plastic bottles monthly and aimed at increasing this figure to 1,000 tons by 2020.

Iliman said this would be a major contribution to Turkish economy.

He stressed that the yarn they produced could be used in numerous fields, such as industrial weaving and knitting as well as furnishing and curtain production.

“We didn’t really expect this much interest in this product. We have come up against certain challenges stemming from introducing a product never before marketed in Turkey. But we have arrived at a point where companies are reaching us without us doing anything. There is a great demand from abroad as well. Currently, because of the limits of our production capacity, we are unable to meet all export demands.”

Having started up as a family firm in 2009, the company now exports its products to 20 countries.