Scientific Opinion on the safety evaluation of the following processes based on EREMA Basic technology used to recycle post-consumer PET into food contact materials “Octal”, “Pregis”, “Sabert”, “Linpac”, “ExtruPET”, “Evertis”, “Holfeld”, “Huhtamaki”, “Snelcore”, and “Re-PET”
This scientific opinion of the EFSA Panel on Food Contact Materials, Enzymes, Flavourings and Processing Aids deals with the safety assessment of the recycling processes Octal, Pregis, Sabert, Linpac, ExtruPET, Evertis, Holfeld, Huhtamaki, Snelcore and Re-PET (RECYC019, RECYC020, RECYC030, RECYC034, RECYC036, RECYC052, RECYC055, RECYC057, RECYC064 and RECYC081 respectively) which are based on the same EREMA Basic technology. The input to the processes is washed and dried poly(ethylene terephthalate)(PET) flakes originating from collected post-consumer PET bottles and containing no more than 5 % PET from non-food consumer applications. In this technology, washed and dried PET flakes are heated in a continuous reactor under vacuum before being extruded. Having examined the results of the challenge test provided, the Panel concluded that the continuous reactor is the critical step that determines the decontamination efficiency of the processes. The operating parameters to control its performance are well defined and are temperature, pressure and residence time. Under these conditions, it was demonstrated that the recycling processes are able to ensure that the level of migration of potential unknown contaminants into food is below the modelled migration of 0.1 μg/kg food derived from the exposure scenario for infants and 0.15 μg/kg food derived from the exposure scenario for toddlers. The Panel concluded that recycled PET obtained from the processes is not of safety concern when used to manufacture articles intended for food contact materials applications in compliance with the conditions as specified in the conclusion of the opinion.