Manufacturing fibers from recycled PET has been a core business since 1974 at Oyama Chemical Company, in Tochigi, a company belonging to Japan Vilene Company, a Freudenberg Business Group. The Japan Vilene Company then uses the fibers to produce nonwovens for car interior linings consisting of 97 percent of old bottles. Over the years, the company has acquired extensive knowhow, particularly when it comes to the viscosity of recycled PET.
Using their acquired expertise, the Oyama specialists have continuously improved the process: Thanks to Oyama, the use of PET recyclate meant that in 2019, some 370 million PET bottles found a new lease of life – initially as fibers and then as door trim and car interior roofs. The clever reuse of a disposable bottle in a durable object used daily means Oyama not only helps reduce the amount of waste, but also conserves precious raw materials.
Oyama’s developers are working on tomorrow’s products, today. The Freudenberg company is researching further applications for recycled PET. With finite raw materials, there are no limits to the imagination for new products based on PET recyclate. “We see major opportunities in the textile and clothing industry, particularly in upholstery material or insulation for outdoor use,” says Masahiro Amagasa, General Manager at Oyama.