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Breaking the mould

Envorinex Managing Director Jenny Brown is in the unique position of collecting waste, recycling and re-manufacturing products from Tasmania’s farming, aquaculture, horticulture and other industry sectors. She explains how the products can be recycled for infrastructure materials.

When Jenny Brown purchased a manufacturing plant and equipment from Tasmania-based SVP Industries in 2009, she saw an opportunity.

The state’s booming aquaculture  industry created thousands of tonnes of plastic from salmon pens, which Jenny identified could be used in manufacturing infrastructure products if recycled.

After extensive market research, she discovered that exporting waste across Tasmania’s Bass Strait to the mainland came at a hefty cost for businesses.

But she found that recycling the materials into products could help reduce costs for her business and others in Tasmania.

To help change the focus of the company, Jenny renamed it to Envorinex, with a goal of helping improve Australia’s environmental footprint through collecting, recycling and remanufacturing plastic into second life products.

“When the previous company closed we bought their machinery and started up again. Since then we’ve focused more on the recycling, though we still manufacture and export our products,” Jenny says.

The company has been recycling plastics since 2009, but in 2015 Envorinex installed its first complete recycling line to process high density polyethylene and polypropylene plastics, used in salmon farming.

Jenny explains that the company, based in Tasmania’s north east, is in a unique position of being a collector, recycler and re-manufacturer of waste plastics with those finished products being exported to countries such as Papua New Guinea, Vietnam and Scotland.

“Because we are based in Tasmania we have the logistics to take into consideration. It’s best for us to recycle the waste here instead of baling the waste and sending it to the mainland or overseas recyclers. We can collect, recycle and re-manufacture it into another product within Tasmania which can then be exported out of the state, sold within Tasmania, and any excess recycled pellets sold to Melbourne manufacturers.”

She says as a result of her work the company now manufactures products from 65 per cent recycled materials.

She estimates up to 12 different streams of waste are collected, including plastics from the salmon industry.

As part of her setup, Jenny says she travels to salmon farms across the state, collecting the plastic from salmon pens and feed pipe.

To read more, see page 24 of Issue 11.