If you’ve been following the debate around full wrap shrink labels and PET container recyclability, you might have heard declarations of victory in the wake of recent trials of new mechanical delabeling equipment. Some have claimed that the equipment pays for itself in about a year, and that all label manufacturers need to do is apply a perforated label. Problem solved? If only it were that simple. As a representative of all the players in the PET value chain, NAPCOR seeks solutions that work across the board. On this issue, we are not there yet.
Mechanical delabeling is an expensive and complex solution. There are, of course, equipment acquisition, installation and ongoing maintenance costs. But the delabeler is not an in-line solution, so it adds a capital expense for conveyors, sorters, etc., to divert full wrap shrink bottles from the main flow, as well as labor costs to handle the bottles multiple times before value can be extracted.