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More Autonomy Through Clothes Hanger Recycling: Plásticos Ojara in Colombia

More Autonomy Through Clothes Hanger Recycling: Plásticos Ojara in Colombia
20 Jul 2022  |
The Colombian company Plásticos Ojara is located in the idyllic south of the city of Medellin. The company is well known in the region as one of the leading manufacturers of plastic clothes hangers. Thanks to the use of a WLK 4 single-shaft shredder, it is possible to recycle rejected products on-site and return the material to the production process. In this way, waste can be effectively avoided, the purchase of raw materials can be reduced, and previously unused residual plastic is given a second life.

For more than 40 years, Plásticos Ojara, which now employs around 200 people, has been an important supplier of hangers to the local textile industry. About 90% of the hangers produced are used by Colombian companies. The other 10% is exported to Ecuador, Panama, El Salvador, Guatemala, and the Dominican Republic.

Wanted: A sustainable solution to the problem of waste

Always concerned about sustainability, the Latin American company was looking for a way to further optimize production and at the same time make it even more environmentally friendly. Those responsible at Plásticos Ojara decided not to dump rejects in the future, but instead to reintegrate the raw material into the manufacturing process. The cycle begins with an industrial shredder.

Recycling division of Plasticos Ojara

Found: The compact plastic shredder WLK 4 from WEIMA

Following recommendations from partner companies, the choice finally fell in favor of WEIMA‘s proven German mechanical engineering. Installation and commissioning went smoothly. Thanks to the comparatively short delivery time, the WLK 4 shredder was soon able to start work – and excelled with high throughput rates.2 / 5 The WLK 4 single-shaft shredder has a working width of 600 mm and an electromechanical drive with WEIMA’s own WAP gearbox in combination with a V-rotor and a generously dimensioned hopper in logspacer design. This prevents feed material from forming bridges. As a rule, it is operated with a throughput of approx. 350 kilograms per hour, but a higher throughput is also possible with continuous feeding. The rotor cutting blades can be flipped several times when worn, which drastically reduces the machine’s maintenance costs. The shredder can be operated intuitively via the touchscreen display. Up to 30% of the manufactured clothes hangers are made from recycled plastic Plásticos Ojara uses only polypropylene (PP), polystyrene (PS), and polyethylene (PE) to produce hangers. Around 250,000 kilograms of these materials are processed every day, most of which come from the company’s own production. Waste generated in the production process (e.g. during start-up and shut-down) is shredded by the WLK 4, then granulated and returned to the manufacturing process to produce new hangers. Around 30% of the clothes hangers are now made using regranulate. In addition to recycling in-house waste, the company also collects old clothes hangers from surrounding customers or stores.

Shredding of plastic clothes hangers

Important – not only in times of crisis: Autonomy

By creating an internal recycling line with WEIMA shredding technology, Plásticos Ojara has now become even more independent of external influences. Expensive raw material purchases are reduced to a minimum. This creates new scope for entrepreneurial activity and further opportunities to optimize production. Storage areas that were previously allocated become available again. Intralogistics expenses for waste handling are reduced. Thus, Plásticos Ojara is a Colombian flagship for the local recycling economy.

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Once you’ve worked with a WEIMA shredder, you will understand why it’s the #1 choice of plastic, waste, paper, and wood recyclers worldwide. Unit after unit, WEIMA provides the same consistent and distinctive German engineering...

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