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McDonald's will test recycled and bio-based materials to make clear plastic cups

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McDonald's will work with its partners Ineos (INEOS) and Aniande Basser (LyondellBasell), as well as Neste, a supplier of polymer renewable raw material solutions, and Pactiv Evergreen, a North American food and beverage packaging supplier, to produce recyclable solutions using a mass balance method, and to try to produce transparent plastic cups from post-consumer plastics and bio-based materials (such as used cooking oil).

According to McDonald's, the clear plastic cup comes from a 50:50 mixture of post-consumer plastic materials and bio-based materials. The company defines bio-based materials as materials derived from biomass (such as plants), and used cooking oil will be included in this section.

McDonald's said it will combine these materials to produce the cup through a mass balance method, which will allow it to measure and track the input of recycled and bio-based materials used in the process, while also including traditional fossil fuel sources.

The new cup will be available at 28 select McDonald's restaurants in the US state of Georgia. For local consumers, McDonald's suggests that the cups can be rinsed and placed in any recycling bin. However, the lids and straws that come with the new cups are currently not recyclable. Recycled cups to create more post-consumer materials for other items.

McDonald's added that the new clear cups are almost identical to the company's existing ones. Consumers are unlikely to notice any difference between the previous and new McDonald's cups.

McDonald's intends to demonstrate through trials that, as one of the world's largest catering companies, McDonald's is willing to invest in and support the production of bio-based and recyclable materials. In addition, it is reported that the company is working to improve the possibility of materials used in the cup on a wider range.

Mike Nagle, CEO of INEOS Olefins & Polymers USA, commented: "We believe that the future of packaging materials needs to become as circular as possible. Together with our customers, we help them deliver on their promise in this area that bringing plastic waste back to virgin plastic is the ultimate definition of recycling and will create a truly circular approach."