Are your products fully recyclable?

Yes, Replas products are fully recyclable, in fact the off-cuts or broken parts are an excellent ingredient to add back into the mix.

Off-cuts, damaged goods and alike can be sent back to us, melted down and used to create more sustainable products to be re-distributed back into the community. Products that reach the end of their long shelf life are also encouraged to be sent back to us to then start the cycle again. This is also available for remote customers.

*provided the products are clean and free of cement  *calculation of the density weight and pallet dimensions needed *reverse freight optional

For more information please view the following blogs on up-cycling:

What material goes into the manufacturing of Replas recycled products? 

Replas can confirm that in all recycled plastic products manufactured by RPA we are using 98% recycled plastic material, with the remainder being the Master Batch, Light Fastener, and UV stabiliser package. The 98% recycled material content, by mass, is in line with AS/NZS ISO 14021 – Environmental labels and declarations – Self-declared environmental claims (Type II environmental labelling)

Why are the lead times for your products so varied? 

The demand for Replas products is increasing as the community becomes more involved in the Circular Economy, and we manufacture to order which allows our products to remain competitive in price. These are made from 98% recycled material – the nature of which is highly variable. Working with this material is complex, and can affect the efficiency of our machinery at times, which is beyond our control.

How do you ensure that your products do not degrade in the sun, salt and sand over time and shed micro-plastics?

For over 25 years, our products have shown, even submerged in salt water that there is little to no derogation. We put in a UV stabiliser for reassurance the sun has limited consequences on our products. Our R&D department continue to find the best mixes and develop products that will last with minimal effect.

What don’t you make more products for residential use? 

Since China sent out a message warning of the impending collapse in their recycling market, Replas made a conscious decision two years ago to move into smaller more consumer based products made from kerbside waste. The good news is that we have just commissioned machinery to be able to produce more retail products and will be releasing our first product made from a mix of 30% ocean plastics and kerbside recycled plastic. This is in accordance with our R&D Director’s research into retail products that Replas can manufacture in addition to the home market products that we already produce being seats, benches, gardens panels, planter boxes and more.

One of the challenges in the recycled plastic industry is collections mean that a range of polymers have to be mixed together and made into a fit for purpose product. One of the limitations is that the products made are necessarily greater than 20mm thick. This is the nature of creating recycled plastic products and limits the types of products that can be manufactured which Replas will overcome with technology research and new equipment.

When virgin polymers are used, the products manufactured can be created into almost anything including most of the single use plastic products that we see in society today which we do not produce. Replas recycles them. For 28 years Replas has increasingly mastered the production of over 200 products which lend themselves to the recycling of plastic waste which is Replas’s mission.

Replas will increasingly produce products that are suitable for the home market however, as many of our products are 20mm thick or above, they have a clear market in the commercial arena which is a great use for recycled plastic. Therefore it is imperative that everyone encourages our councils, governments, schools and big corporations to create a demand for recycled plastic products by recycled products becoming a priority in purchasing and tenders by all these entities.

Replas is ready to supply.

What types of material are in your recycled ‘mix’? 

There are a variety of mixed recyclables in Replas products. Post consumer material comes from the soft plastic collected at Coles and Woolworths through the RedCycle program, as well as car bumpers. Post commercial materials comes from hospital waste, post industrial mixed plastics are factory scraps, and mixed hygiene products comes from multiple polymer types and paper.

What types of moulding do you use?

We use a proprietary process developed in house, similar to injection moulding.

What plastic does RedCycle collect? 

RedCycle collects soft plastics or ‘srunchable’ plastics. Find out more about RedCycle at their website: http://www.redcycle.net.au/

Our order arrived wrapped in soft plastic, seems a bit contradicting? 

Generally, the plastic we send out to customers uses stretch wrap and is fully recyclable and is a valued plastic for us to capture and use in our ‘cake mix.’ Due to the chain of responsibility legislation, we use this material for safety regulations and it is the most environmentally friendly option we can take back from the customer to then process.

Does contaminated packaging affect the raw material supply? 

As long as the ration is small and there are really low levels, the material can still be processed.

Has the community engagement increased and are consumers looking for more facilities to collect their recycled waste due to the recent exposure and social conversations? 

Consumer engagement has increased a lot due to recent exposure but the same discussions we were having 15 years ago need to be had – we need discussions more focused on purchasing of recycled products otherwise the whole ‘recycling/collection’ process falls away and the traditional methods of landfill become the only solution.

What is the Circular Economy? 

Our partners, Planet Ark, give a great explanation of what the Circular Economy is just below:

What is a circular economy?

Most Australians are all too familiar with the traditional linear economy, that is, the ‘make, use, dispose’ economy – sometimes referred to as a ‘throwaway’ society. This linear approach is inefficient and has many negative impacts on the environment. We also live on a planet with limited resources. There is an alternative, called the circular economy. Nature recycles everything – nutrients flow from one living organism to another. But our ‘linear’ economy ignores this law of nature. In a circular economy, the aim is to keep materials from being thrown ‘away’ (since there is no ‘away’). The best way to do that is to reduce consumption or design out waste before it is created. And then via re-using or recycling the product or its component parts, we keep resources in the productive economy. This approach creates a continuous cycle and capitalises on the fact that the longer an item is in use, the more value (and return on investment) can be extracted. The cycle is restorative and regenerative by design.

Why is a circular economy important?

The current economic model is reaching its physical limits. A circular economy will preserve natural resources, and not only mined minerals but also our oceans, soil, and whole ecosystems. It will minimise risks by managing limited stocks and renewable resources. Waste in a circular economy builds capital rather than reduces it. By rethinking the way we make stuff, we can design a product or its parts to be disassembled and regenerated into new products. Extending the life of a product or its parts reduces waste. In addition, a circular economy creates new business ventures and revenue streams. Examples of this are provided in the Inspiring Stories we produce each month in our newsletter stories. A circular economy means more than just putting recyclables out for collection; developing robust end markets is the key.

How easy is it to ignite/set alight?

Recycled-plastic is harder to ignite than hardwood timber and if it does get set alight it’s typically ignited by other fuel or debris. We are working on a solution to this but there isn’t a cost effective one as yet.

Is it easier than wood to clean?

Recycled-plastic is much easier than wood to clean, a citrus based cleaning wash will suffice or a bleach can be used to get rid of mould.

Is graffiti easy to remove?

Different variables in the environment affect the ease in which graffiti can be removed, like all materials newer graffiti is easier to remove from surfaces. If you are looking for a solution talk to your Rep about a Sacrificial Anti-Graffiti Coating.

Does it get hot?

Like all other materials, recycled-plastic will heat up when in extreme conditions. The lighter the colour of the product, the less the heat will be absorbed.

How long does it last?

Our Recycled-plastic products will last 40 years + as they don’t split, rot or crack like other materials such as wood.

Can you paint the products?

It is not necessary to paint our products as they are rich in colour and require little to no maintenance. We also advise against painting recycled-plastic as our product will expand and contract.

Does it fade?

All our products are now made with UV stabilisers which will protect the recycled-plastic from sun damage. Typically, our products will fade a lot less over time than other traditional materials.