Product diversity when sorting empties

The Packaging & Packaging Waste Regulation (PPWRR) of the European Union and further increase of the reusable quota in Germany from 2024 onwards shall enable the buyer to choose between disposable and reusable mineral water, soft drinks, beer, juice, milk, kefir or yoghurt packages at the discounter. The corresponding empties must then also be taken back by the discounter and handed over to the manufacturers. Taking back empties becomes more demanding.

More product variance in returnable sorting

This task is solved by a sorting system being proven since 2002 with more than a thousand systems operating daily with a large product variance. Proven means that it is

  • uncomplicated
  • cleary set up
  • insensitive to dirt and shards
  • almost maintenance-free

Final sorting for returnables

Supermarkets such as Edeka or Rewe and discounters such as Aldi, Kaufland, Lidl, Netto or Penny are confronted with more reusable bottles. Discounters also have to offer beer, soft drinks, mineral water, milk, kefir or, for example, yoghurt in reusable bottles and jars and take back the empties accordingly. Just as it is already common practice in supermarkets.

Sorting crates in a logistics centre for returned empties

More types of empties will have to be sorted efficiently, in addition to the returnable bottles, beverage crates, baskets, collapsible boxes or tubs already taken back by supermarkets. The empties are to be sorted by type and delivered to the bottling plants, food manufacturers, cideries or dairies.

Sorting food baskes and collapsed salad boxes

Is worth looking at the sorting system in terms of product variety, trouble free long term operation, space requirements and repeatable sorting function now.

One sorter for a variety of products

Folded collapsible boxes with a height of a little more than an inch (3 centimetres) for lettuce or vegetables, low crates for yoghurt jars, narrow high and correspondingly tippy Volvic crates for six plastic bottles and meat tubs stacked about one metre high are sorted quickly and safely. The well thought-out arrangement of the rejection system above the conveyor ensures reliable, trouble-free continuous operation. The servo technology enables repeatable work cycles even with light, high and correspondingly tippy sorting goods.

Two rotating transfer boards alternate during sorting. In this way, containers, crates, boxes and tippy stacked tubs reach the desired final position safely and precisely.

Sortierung von Mineralwasserkisten und Kasten mit Joghurt Mehrwegggläsern
Sorting system for tall and tippy Mineral water crates and low Joghurt jars

The systems run almost wear-free and have been in operation for more than 20 years without significant maintenance or downtime. Dirt or shards fall down, eliminating the need for cleaning. Mechanical components are housed above the conveyor in a closed casing.

Simple, fast and cost-effective retrofit

Sortec sorting systems offer high sorting speeds. Regarding the installation, the low space requirement next to the conveyor belt with a very short installation length is attractive. In particularly cramped conditions, we have also running two systems on top of each other on one frame.

With the globally proven sorting system, you can handle a wide range of returned reusable packaging in your take-back and empties distribution centre. This makes it easier for discounters and supermarkets to take the step towards more reusable packaging.