Agricultural big bags are now recycled outside of France. But 10 million euros will be invested near Gisors (Eure) in a recycling plant for these large polypropylene and polyethylene plastic bags. The investment is supported by several shareholders, including the All Sun group. The supply of big bags will be largely provided by the eco-organization ADI Valor.

A recycling plant for agricultural big bags – large flexible plastic bags intended in particular for bulk agricultural products, such as fertilizers and seeds – will be built near Gisors (Eure) with an investment of 10 million euros. 55% of the investment is carried by the All Sun group, based in Bézu-Saint-Eloi (Eure) and its president Luc Letierce, and 45% by a group of shareholders including Rémi Durand, former president and today now director of the Vexin dehydration cooperatives (Eure).

About fifteen jobs should be created gradually to operate this installation. Two sites in the Gisors region are expected to house the plant. They are currently being validated by Dreal, the Regional Department for the Environment, Planning and Housing.

The future factory benefited from a loan from Bpifrance as part of France Relaunch. It should be operational in June 2023. It has a recycled plastics capacity of 10,000 tonnes per year. This should be achieved in 2024, according to a joint press release from Novus, a subsidiary of All Sun created for this project, and ADI Valor (Farmers, distributors, industrialists for the recovery of agricultural waste) the eco-organization in responsible for the collection and recovery of agricultural supply waste.

According to Luc Letierce, president of Novus and All Sun, the recycling of big bags will “contribute to making the use of agricultural inputs and in particular packaged fertilizers more sustainable”. It is part of All Sun’s business logic. Specializing in port logistics and agricultural trading, the group distributes fertilizers, some of which are packaged in big bags. It achieves 250 million euros in turnover with 90 employees.

Locating the bulk of recycling capacities in France

For its part, ADI Valor will ensure a large part of the plant’s supply of big bags, i.e. around 6,000 tonnes per year for an incoming capacity of 10,000 tonnes. For Ronan Vanot, Managing Director of ADI Valor, a non-profit SAS based in Lyon (Rhône), the project “consolidates ADI Valor’s commitment to recycling 100% of this type of packaging and illustrates the desire to localize France the maximum recycling capacity”. A small revolution compared to the existing situation since all the big bags (30,000 tonnes, including 9,000 agricultural tonnes) are now recycled outside France: in Poland, Spain and Italy…

The Novus plant will use innovative techniques in the crushing and sorting of big bags, steps that precede washing, drying and extrusion. Broadly speaking, the two layers of the big bags – the polypropylene and the polyethylene in the inner layer – will be separated, making it possible to obtain a recycled product of better quality, comparable to the virgin material used at the start – which is not the case when the recycled material is mixed. This makes possible an incorporation in the manufacture of so-called “noble” packaging as opposed to garbage bags or crates.

In parallel with the Novus project in Gisors, ADI Valor is engaged on other fronts concerning the recycling of plastics used in agriculture, including the recycling of strings and nets used to store fodder for animals or straw after harvest. It will supply the facility operated by RecyOuest in Argentan (Orne), which will come into operation in September 2022.

ADI Valor is also involved in the recycling of agricultural films used in market gardening. It will supply film to the Vendargues plant in Hérault operated by Plasticlean (Aimargues, Gard), a subsidiary of the Calvet group. The facility should be able to recycle all the films used in France in 2023.