The special wash-off adhesive for labels 62Rpw, which HERMA will shortly be introducing, will allow recycling operators to produce high-purity PET pellets that do not contain any detrimental residues – no remains of paper or film labels, and no residual adhesive. Unlike downcycling or cascading, the resulting continuous cycle ranks among the most important requirements of a sustainable economy.

The focus has long since been not only on PET beverage bottles, but also on detergent bottles, soap dispensers and cans for food and cosmetics. The HERMA adhesive, designated 62Rpw, offers the attributes of reliable adhesion and good resistance to the effects of moisture. Regular industrial cleaning processes are nonetheless capable of removing it without a trace.

HERMA realized this combination of characteristics thanks to innovative multi-layer technology. The intermediate layer enables the adhesive to bond securely with the label and therefore allows it to be removed completely from the PET surface later. This new adhesive is to be made available initially with a wet-strength and alkali-proof paper and a PP film: For the label materials HERMAcoat greaseproof (grade 228) and HERMA PO transparent (grade 846), certificates from the Institute cyclos-HPT are now available certifying the recyclability in conjunction with the 62Rpw adhesive. For two further label materials made of film – HERMA PP white extra tc (grade 880) and HERMA PP 50 transparent tc (grade 885) – HERMA expects corresponding certificates shortly. All of these materials are suitable for applying to PET containers and bottles.

In the HERMA laboratory each of the label materials with the new adhesive 62Rpw achieved a wash-off rate of 100% according to the strict requirements imposed by the Petcore test protocol version 1.4. Petcore is a European trade association encompassing the entire PET supply chain from manufacturers to users and recycling enterprises.

The special multi-layer adhesive 62Rpw makes PET recycling simple because it aids the complete and rapid removal of the labels during washing as part of the recycling process.