2017 Session descriptions

The expertly curated sessions at Plastics Recycling 2018 will offer presentations from top plastics recycling executives, leaders of industry associations, informed analysts and others. Attendees will walk away with updates on the most critical industry trends and a deeper understanding of the market and material specifics shaping plastics recycling profitability today.

Topics to be covered include:

-Pricing factors for key recovered details (featuring experts from market research firm IHS Markit)

-Analysis and guidance on China's National Sword import restrictions

-A technical track from the Association of Plastic Recyclers

-Opportunities in auto plastics recycling (organized by the Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries)

-The latest on plastics-to-fuel technologies (featuring executives from Agilyx, Renewlogy, RES Polyflow and Vadxx)

-A look at the latest technology reshaping plastics processing

-Fresh perspectives on the ocean plastics issue

-Overseas updates from the China Scrap Plastics Association

-Case studies in how recycled resin is being used by various brand owners

The full version of this year's sessions descriptions will be available soon.

See what you missed Last year

Tuesday, march 7

Plenary Session I: Opportunity Amid Buzzwords
8:30 - 10:00 A.M. I Celestin Ballroom DE

The conference's opening plenary session focuses on moving from buzzwords to best practices. Two of the terms showing up often in the current era of recycling – the circular economy and sustainable materials management – are often misunderstood and misused. To help straighten out our semantics, sustainability leaders will discuss the concepts guiding corporate decision-making today and will explore the ways the plastics recycling industry can better position itself to ensure plastics recovery maintains its central role in the evolving sustainability movement. (English-to-Mandarin and English-to-Spanish translation service provided.)

- Moderator: Steve Alexander, The Association of Plastic Recyclers

- Rick Perez, Avangard Innovative
- Nina Goodrich, GreenBlue
- Steve Sikra, Procter & Gamble
- Zach Freeze, Walmart

Plenary Session II: Where Do Resin Markets Go From Here?
10:45 A.M. - 12:15 P.M. I Celestin Ballroom DE

Most players in the plastics recycling system know the impacts of the current low value of resin – but it's unclear exactly what's coming next. What can reclaimers and converters expect in resin demand and pricing? And how can the plastic recycling market compete against virgin production? In our second plenary session, we’ve asked acclaimed experts from IHS and SBA-CCI to share their assessments of important market trends for PE, PP and PET. Included will be a comprehensive review of the Chinese resin market and its impact on global resin trends. (English-to-Spanish and English-to-Mandarin translation service provided.)

- Moderator: Stephanie Baker, KW Plastics 

- Joel Morales, IHS
- Kailin Fu, IHS
- John Maddox, SBA-CCI

Concurrent Session A: Technical Track - Connecting the Links of Plastics Recycling
Organized by Plastics Forming Enterprises
1:30 - 3:00 P.M. I Celestin Ballroom A-C

An information-packed session designed and presented by the experts at Plastics Forming Enterprises will show how to overcome the technical challenges related to taking a plastic from the wash line to the converter – and then into a new plastic product and back again. Experts will address the ways converters can overcome barriers to use post-consumer resin in a wider variety of items. These speakers will also discuss how brands can develop plastic products that can more easily be moved through the recycling value chain once they are on the market.

- Moderator/Speaker: Kristi Hansen, Plastics Forming Enterprises

- Rob Flores, Berry Plastics
- Domenic Di Mondo, Green Mantra
- Sarah Dearman, Coca-Cola

Concurrent Session B: Driving Plastics Recycling with Good Policy
1:30 - 3:00 P.M. I Celestin Ballroom DE

Recycling does not happen in a vacuum – voluntary and mandatory policy drivers have long helped place plastics recovery in the driver’s seat and hit the gas.  This session answers key policy questions.  Can comprehensive voluntary industry actions help move plastics recycling upward?  Are industry cooperatives a viable approach to effectively deliver efficient services?  How can state governments help push the growth in plastics recycling? (English-to-Spanish translation service provided.)

- Moderator: Rick Moore, National Association for PET Container Resources

- Craig Cookson, American Chemistry Council
- Jules Bailey, Oregon Beverage Recycling Cooperative
- Scott Mouw, North Carolina Division of Environmental Assistance & Customer Service

Concurrent Session C: China's Plastic Recycling Market – In the Midst of Changes
Sponsored and presented by the China Scrap Plastics Association (CSPA)
1:30 - 3:00 P.M. I Celestin Ballroom F-H

It has long been clear that plastics is a global industry. China, the world's second largest economy, is a major driver in plastics recycling market demand and in recycled plastic product making. Our friends at the China Scrap Plastics Association will offer extensive details regarding Chinese recycling trends and local operations. (Mandarin-to-English translation provided.)

- Jason Wang, China Scrap Plastics Association
- Steve Wong, Fukutomi Company Limited
- Lejun Zhang, Dongguan Ying Kun Electronic Technology, Ltd.
- Shumin Deng, Guangzhou 3E Machinery Co. Ltd

Concurrent Session D: Technical Track - Melt Filtration Under a Microscope
3:30 - 5:00 P.M. I Celestin Ballroom A-C

One exciting plastics recycling technology development in recent years has been the evolution of melt-filtration systems, which remove high levels of contaminants in post-consumer resins. To help facility operators better understand the possibilities in this realm, technology experts from systems makers will offer equipment case studies. Attendees will learn more about the types of plastics these systems can handle, the throughput levels to be expected and the critical details on contamination removal.

- Moderator: Sergio Firpo, Azure Technologies, Inc.

- Sandy Guthrie, ADG Solutions
- Clemens Kitzberger, Erema
- Mike Diletti, Ettlinger
- Paola Crea, Fimic
- Monika Gneuss, Gneuss

Concurrent Session E: Latin American Success Stories
3:30 - 5:00 P.M. I Celestin Ballroom DE

In this session, plastics recycling industry executives from Latin American markets provide updates on recovery in their respective countries. Additionally, attendees will learn how plastics are collected, processed and reused in Latin America. The learning lessons from this region provide a clear assessment of how plastics recycling is changing globally.  (English-to-Spanish translation service provided.)

- Moderator: Santiago Garcia, ECOCE

- Jaime Camara, PetStar
- Jacobo Escriva, San Miguel
- George Gatlin, Invema

Concurrent Session F: The Next Material to Target
3:30 - 5:00 P.M. I Celestin Ballroom F-H

Is the processing and utilization of carbon-fiber composites the next big recycling business? This informative session will lay out the potential opportunities – and the barriers – to this growing recycling sector. Speakers will focus on the key new processing systems being brought to the market by several technology development firms. Attendees will also be shown key findings from important academic research in the carbon-fiber arena. 

- Moderator: Will Sagar, Southeast Recycling Development Council

- Rey Banatao, Connora Technologies
- Jerry Qi, Georgia Tech
- Philip Taynton, Mallinda LLC


Wednesday, March 8

Plenary Session III: Digging into Market Demand
8:30 - 10:00 A.M. I Celestin Ballroom DE

Plastics recycling has a baseline truth to it: If there is no market for the post-consumer resin (PCR) produced, then none of the hard work and investment that went into making it matters. This session brings together some of the more innovative makers, converters and users of PCR on the market. We give a hard look at the innovations being developed by converters, brand owners and others that will make the plastics recycling market strong into the future. (English-to-Spanish and English-to-Mandarin translation service provided.)

- Moderator: Tamsin Ettefagh, Envision Plastics

- Jamie Christopher, PakTech
- Robert Combs, Burt's Bees
- Shahram Baradaran, Green Toys
- Derrick Lawrence, Seventh Generation

Concurrent Session G: Strategic Tools to Make Recycling Work
10:30 A.M. - 12:00 P.M. I Celestin Ballroom A-C

What are the techniques that are the best to help recover and recycle the most plastic? What resources can plastics reclaimers use to decide how to best move their business forward? This session details three efforts that are helping to boost individual companies and the plastics recycling industry as a whole. Attendees will walk away with a better understanding of key business development strategies and how to use greater volumes of recovered plastics in products.

- Moderator: Patty Moore, Moore Recycling Associates 

- Nina Bellucci Butler, Moore Recycling Associates
- Kelly Cramer, GreenBlue
- Kara Pochiro, The Association of Plastic Recyclers

Concurrent Session H: Technical Track - Syllabus for Success
10:30 A.M. - 12:00 P.M. I Celestin Ballroom DE

No technically complicated industry can get very far without the help of studies and experimentation in the academic sector. We've assembled a group of experienced researchers who will explain the ways the future of the technical side of plastics recovery is unfolding now in university laboratories. (English-to-Spanish translation service provided.)

- Moderator: Jonathan Levy, Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries

- Keith Vorst, Iowa State University
- Jose Alfaro, Michigan State University
- Robert Malloy, University of Massachusetts, Lowell

Concurrent Session I: Sorting Through the Issues
10:30 A.M. - 12:00 P.M. I Celestin Ballroom F-H

Reclaimers buying bales from local materials recovery facilities (MRFs) continue to report high levels of contamination from some suppliers – but several trends offer hope for progress. This session will offer a thorough review of developments in automated plastics identification and sortation technology by a number of equipment makers. Another speaker will describe his firm’s innovative work in designing and operating sophisticated and efficient plastics sortation systems. The third presentation will show how a MRF can work best with the communities and haulers it serves to ultimately generate higher-quality plastics for reclaimers and other buyers.

- Moderator: Chaz Miller, National Waste & Recycling Association

- Jerry Powell, Resource Recycling, Inc.
- Dylan de Thomas, The Recycling Partnership
- Mike Centers, Titus MRF Services

Plenary Session IV: A Sea of Challenges
1:00 - 2:30 P.M. I Celestin Ballroom DE

There isn't a more hot-button topic in the industry than the problem of used plastics ending up in oceans and other waterways. News headlines on this topic abound, and many of the reports negatively affect the public's perception of plastics recycling and the wider plastics industry. Attend this session to better understand how smart action and partnerships among plastics recycling stakeholders can help society move forward on this important environmental issue. (English-to-Spanish translation provided.)

- Moderator: Keefe Harrison, The Recycling Partnership 

- Stewart Harris, American Chemistry Council
- Ted Siegler, DSM Environmental
- Brett Stevens, TerraCycle