World's most sustainable glass bottles created in ground-breaking biofuel trial in Derrylin

Gary McDonald Business Editor

THE former Quinn Glass business in Co Fermanagh, now named Encirc, has created the world's most sustainable glass bottles in a ground-breaking biofuel trial.

A revolutionary project undertaken by glass container manufacturer Encirc (part of the Vidrala company) and industry research and technology organisation Glass Futures has proven that new bottles are able to be made from 100 per cent recycled glass, using only the energy from burning ultra-low-carbon biofuels.

It is thought that the world-first initiative will pave the way for an industry-wide reduction in carbon emissions, as the glass sector moves away from fossil fuels, and towards low-carbon alternatives.

Made out of waste organic materials, biofuels are a renewable and much more sustainable fuel source than those traditionally used by the glass sector, and can reduce the carbon footprint of each bottle by up to 90 per cent.

By using up to 100 per cent recycled glass to create the new bottles, the trial has been able to even further minimise the lifetime impact of these products.

More in-depth results from the trial, taking place at the Encirc plant at Derrylin in Co Fermanagh, are expected to come in over the next few weeks and will feed into UK Government policy around decarbonisation.

Adrian Curry, managing director at Encirc, said: “This is a truly momentous occasion for glass. We have set the standard globally with this trial and now the glass industry needs to work towards realising what we've proved is possible.

“We now know that glass can be the most sustainable of all packaging types and must all work together to ensure that happens.”

Encirc, which last year had sales of more than £310 million, has 1,500 employees at sites in Fermanagh, Cheshire and Corsico in Italy, producing three billion glass bottles and other containers a year.

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