Radio 2

Ghent firm to become the first in Belgium to recycle dirty nappies

The Ghent (East Flanders) start-up Woosh is teaming up with the nappy manufacturer Ontex to try and reduced the amount of waste produced by discarded disposable nappies. As part of its new nappy recycling service Woosh has started collections of dirty nappies from crèches across Ghent. The nappies can only be recycled if they are collected separately from other rubbish. Up until now nappies have ended up with waste that isn’t recycled and is more often than not incinerated.  

In recent years the manufactures of disposable nappies have been moving towards the use of more eco-friendly production methods and materials. For example, the Aalst (East Flanders) company Ontex produces its nappies from materials that can be recycled. However, there was no company in Belgium that offered a nappy recycling service. The launch of Woosh has changed all that.

The company’s Jeff Stubbe told VRT Radio 2 East Flanders that Woosh and Ontex have the same aim: to reduce the mountain of waste produced by disposable nappies. "There are companies that recycle nappies in several foreign countries, for example The Netherlands, the UK and Italy”.

Woosh offers a nappy collection services to crèches in and around Ghent. The company collects dirty nappies and at the same time delivers clean ones to the crèches. It is currently looking for a waste recycling company to recycle the nappies it collects. Jeff Stubbe says that he hopes that the first nappies will have been recycled before the end of the year.

Used nappies contain numerous elements that can be put to good use elsewhere. The contents of a used nappy can be used to produce biogas and the plastic and glue in the nappies can be turned into small plastic balls that in turn can be made into other plastic items, for example car parts or even garden furniture. 

Top stories