IKOS owns two units of sorting with a total capacity of treatment of 15 000 tonnes. Its geographical establishment and its competences in that matter make the company the specialist in clean and dry recycling within the department.
In close connection with the communities that IKOS is supporting, IKOS establishes statistics of sorting, deriving from characteristics so that its partners can adjust their awareness campaigns as good as possible with their fellow citizens. The products sorted and recycled, resold to the concerned operators in the market, are only beneficial for the communities.
Today, the trend is to reduce the weight of packaging. However, IKOS can help communities to improve their recycling rate by promoting, with it, the selective sorting of materials that are easy to recover.
Door to door collection or in yellow access points, the packaging is sorted on a chain. Different products are then separated to be baled and dispatched to specialized recycling sites.
That way, transparent bottles (PET) are recycled into clothes of polyester fleece; colored bottles (PET) into textile fibers for the filling of cushions, sofas, interior filling of coats; opaque bottles (PEHD) into grey and hard plastic for dustbins; beverage cartons into paper towels, toilet paper or wrapping paper; cardboard and pre-cut cardboard into other cardboard and pre-cut cardboard; ferrous packaging into nonferrous metals non-food (benches, steel structures, etc.) ; metal packaging into nonferrous non-food (bicycle frames, automobile parts, etc.)
Paper is collected in blue access points, then sorted by what can be recycled and what not. Therefore it needs to be clean and non-yellowed. That way are admitted newspapers, prospectus, directories, white paper, etc. and refused spiral pads, books are papers still under plastic cover, etc. The communities need to be careful with the sorting and remember the criteria to contribute to a lower cost for the treatment of waste, then only they may be called the 'ambassadors of sorting'.
Afterwards the recycled paper is sent to the factories where paper is manufactured. It will enter in the composition of a new paper paste, thereby reducing the number of trees to be cut for this operation. The paper fibers can be recycled 9 times, on average, before becoming too short to be reused.
Glass is only collected directly at access points, to avoid cuttings. The signage of those access points is green throughout France. It was the first sorting unit that was put in place, even when still the operating instructions were given, the one for glass has the best recycling rate from all the others: 61%.
Recycled glass is immediately delivered to the glass industry as it is too dangerous to sort glass manually. It is crushed, washed and sorted on optic chains and laser allowing the separation of the residues papers, plastics, as well as metal, from the bottle. Afterwards it is melted to enter into the composition of a new glass paste. This way it is recycled ad infinitum, limiting as much as possible the extraction of silica and sand.