On Tuesday 4 September, the Paper Manufacturers Association of South Africa (PAMSA) and Mpact Recycling hosted a group of journalists at the Mpact Paper Springs mill, taking them on a tour of the mill. This gave them an opportunity to see the ins and outs of the paper recycling process.
Speaking at the event, John Hunt, managing director of Mpact Recycling, said: “Long-term sustainable recycling in South Africa requires long-term sustainable investment in the country’s recycling capacity. This means investing in recycling facilities such as paper mills and plastic operations that create a market for recyclable materials. This will also allow the approximately 100,000 people who rely on constant volumes of recycled material to earn a sustainable living, from the factory employees to the entrepreneurs and small business owners, and the collectors.”
“Today, recycling is recognised by government and many South Africans as a job-creating beneficiation activity and integral to the pursuit of a green economy.”
Jane Molony, executive director of Paper Manufacturers Association of South Africa, echoed this sentiment, “Paper recycling is a vital part of our country’s fibre story. South Africa has been using waste paper to make new paper since 1920. With limited land suitable for the commercial growing of trees, South Africa has built up a strong paper recovery sector. Given that paper fibres can only be recycled 6-7 times, virgin fibre is often added to the mix. That said, some mills might use 100% recovered fibre in their pulp recipes.”