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AION facilitates a circular economy for industrial plastics

Published 19 Dec 2022 (updated 29 Apr 2024) · 3 min read

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At a glance

  • Solution for large-scale circular plastic recycling
  • Closes the plastics loop for companies at industrial scale
  • Reduces CO₂ emissions, plastic waste and plastic consumption

AION provides solutions for closed-loop plastic recycling at industrial scale, reducing carbon emissions and preventing plastic waste pollution. “We are the first to offer a tangible circularity solution for large plastics consumers,” says Runa Haug Khoury, advisor and former CEO at AION.

It is hard to imagine a world without plastic. “Plastic is great for many needs. It’s light, durable and recyclable,” says Haug Khoury. However, of the 7 billion metric tons of plastic waste generated to date, only 10 per cent has been recycled.

“The linear model doesn’t make sense at scale. We need to return to the ideology of our grandparents. They didn’t spend more than necessary and repaired what they could. We must rethink how we handle resources in the 21st century,” says Haug Khoury.

AION provides Circularity as a Service℠

AION helps big brand companies to shift from a linear to a circular plastics economy. The solution delivers recyclable plastic products, a digital platform and knowhow from an interdisciplinary team of experts. AION calls this Circularity as a Service℠.

First, AION takes responsibility for the customer’s circular plastic products. These typically include pallets, storage bins, serving trays and shopping baskets.

“We ensure sure that the end-of-life plastics are collected, shredded and granulated, reproduced into another generation of products, and then collected again to start this process all over again,” says Haug Khoury.

In addition, AION provides a digital platform for traceability. Known as the AION LOOP, the platform tracks, traces and analyses industrial plastic materials. This helps to optimise the value chain and establish trust in a company’s sustainability claims. Accurate Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) reporting is a part of this as well.

Seamless closed loop system for plastic waste

AION’s experts set up a seamless circular loop to fit the company’s existing operations. This is knowhow that most companies lack within their organisations.

“We take a bird’s eye view of the operations and reorganise where needed, particularly in logistics,” says Haug Khoury. “We coordinate across the value chain – from material sourcing and design to production, technology development and impact analytics.”

By definition, a closed loop system will reduce a company’s carbon emissions, plastic waste and plastic consumption. AION aims to replace 7 500 metric tons of virgin plastic with recycled plastic and deliver solutions that abate 15 000 metric tons of CO₂ by 2023.

Circular economy a trillion dollar opportunity

The circular economy represents a market that will grow to USD 4.5 trillion by 2030. Drivers such as the EU Taxonomy, government regulations, CSR and customer expectations will fuel this demand.

“We are seeing many companies eager to adopt a circular system. We orchestrate this with a commercial drive and remove the complexity for the end-user,” says Haug Khoury.

AION currently has customers in Europe, including McDonald’s fast food restaurants in Denmark, Norway and Sweden, and MENY, a large Norwegian supermarket chain. The company seeks to expand within the Nordics, the UK and the US, and sees particular promise within the aquaculture and retail grocery sectors.

AION is an impact company established in 2020 by Aker BioMarine, a sustainable Norwegian biotech company. “We aim to be a thought leader in the resource economy of plastics,” concludes Haug Khoury.

Tormod Sandstø

Communications Director

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Widerøeveien 5, 1360 FORNEBU, Norway

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