Istanbul, which is home to nearly 15 mn people, produces an average of 17,000 tonne of domestic waste every day, out of which 6,000 tonne are processed in IBB’s garbage collection and recycling centers. A recent effort by Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality (IBB) aims to increase the volume of renewable waste collected from Istanbulites through a new system that will refund the value of each recycling deposit to the resident’s megacity transport card. Turkey has pioneered recycling efforts in recent years, both through awareness initiatives to empower individual consumers and also recycling infrastructure to take advantage of the resources discarded in the trash. The plastic bottles used by the company are collected from several locations, such as schools, hospitals, hotels and various institutions, and then processed in fibre. Having started up as a family firm in 2009, the company now exports its products to 20 countries.
“We didn’t really expect this much interest in this product,” admitted General Director ErmanIliman, adding that the company initially faced challenges since the product had never before been marketed in Turkey he said that” 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.”
General Director ErmanIliman told that, “As a result of our long-standing research and development project, we have become the first plant in Turkey that produces yarn completely out of recycled plastic bottles.”He also said that useful in numerous sectors, such as industrial weaving and knitting as well as furnishing and curtain production, increasing yarn production contributes to the Turkish economy.
The yarn, which is internationally-accredited and certified, 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 fibre and yarn.” He further added that, “Our daily production capacity is 5 tonne of yarn, and we want to raise it to 20 tonne by 2019 and 40 tonne by 2020,” adding that they processed around 200 tonne of plastic bottles monthly and aimed at increasing this figure to 1,000 tonne by 2020. Every day, thousands of plastic bottles are saved from landfills and spun into 5 tonne of yarn that are exported around the world from a textile firm in Western Turkey’s prominent industrial center Bursa.