Canadian Plastics

Vinyl Institute of Canada launches medical PVC recycling pilot project

The PVC 123 program seeks to divert products from landfills and encourage the recycling of PVC-based medical devices in hospitals.

September 23, 2020   Canadian Plastics

Industry association the Vinyl Institute of Canada has launched Canada’s first medical PVC recycling pilot partnership.

Called “PVC 123”, the pilot was established with funding support from Environment and Climate Change Canada and the Vinyl Institute of Canada, and aims to divert products from landfills and encourage the recycling of PVC (polyvinyl chloride) medical devices in hospitals. Hospital operating rooms which produce the highest volume of IV bags, oxygen mask, and oxygen tubing waste, will be the first point of collection; the collected materials will then be remanufactured into new products.

St. Joseph’s Health Centre and Humber River Hospital in Toronto lead the pilot project, which began on Sept. 15 and will run through March 31, 2021. Additional hospitals are expected to join the program this year. “Life-saving devices are made from PVC. Our industry has been recycling since the 1980s, and we are excited to add hospitals to our growing list of recyclers in Canada,” said Vinyl Institute of Canada president and CEO Aiñe Curran in a statement.

Cambridge, Ont.-based PVC recycler Norwich Plastics will oversee the logistics of the collected materials and their conversion into new products, such as hoses, tubing, automotive supplies, and sound-dampening products. Norwich Plastics president Tribu Persaud said the company expects to divert at least 80,000 pounds of recyclable PVC from landfills during the run of the pilot project.

Laurie Thomas, director of the perioperative and endoscopy programs at Humber River in Toronto, described in the statement as one of Canada’s most technologically advanced hospitals, will outfit 20 operating rooms and five endoscopy suites, as well as the post anesthetic care unit and surgical day care, with PVC collection receptacles. “If we can show people that a fast-paced and complex hospital environment can recycle, then we all can,” Thomas said. “It’s a great message for Humber River Hospital to cultivate.”

“The PVC123 recycling pilot is a true innovation not only for the vinyl industry and hospitals, but a great leadership model for the entire plastics industry in Canada,” Vinyl Institute of Canada chairman Veso Sobot said.

Headquartered in Oakville, Ont., the Vinyl Institute of Canada was founded in 1993 and represents a wide range of manufacturers of vinyl in all applications.


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