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 ‘Coveris’ and ‘Envaplaster'

food contact material, plastic, polyethylene terephthalate (PET), recycling process, EREMA Basic, safety assessment
First published in the EFSA Journal
13 April 2015
18 March 2015
Scientific Opinion


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 Coveris and Envaplaster (RECYC0117 and RECYC0120, respectively), which are based on the same EREMA Basic technology. The input to these processes is washed and dried polyethylene terephthalate (PET) flakes originating from collected post-consumer PET bottles 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 into pellets. Having examined the results of the challenge test provided, the Panel concluded that the continuous reactor (step 2) is the critical step that determines the decontamination efficiency of the processes. The operating parameters to control the performance of this step are well defined and are temperature, pressure and residence time. It was demonstrated that the recycling processes under evaluation are able to ensure that the level of migration of potential unknown contaminants into food is below a conservatively modelled migration of 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 the final thermoformed trays and containers manufactured with the recycled pellets and not used for packaging water contain up to 90 % recycled post-consumer PET for Envaplaster, and up to 100 % recycled post-consumer PET for Coveris.

Panel members at the time of adoption

Claudia Bolognesi, Laurence Castle, Jean-Pierre Cravedi, Karl-Heinz Engel, Paul Fowler, Konrad Grob, Rainer Gürtler, Trine Husøy, Wim Mennes, Maria Rosaria Milana, André Penninks, Vittorio Silano, Andrew Smith, Maria de Fátima Tavares Poças, Christina Tlustos, Fidel Toldrá, Detlef Wölfle and Holger Zorn.
Panel on Food Contact Materials, Enzymes, Flavourings and Processing Aids
fip [at]
EFSA Journal 2015;13(4):4065
On request from
Food Standards Agency and Ministerio de Sanidad, Servicios Sociales e Igualdad