− We give a lifetime guarantee on the pen mechanism. The ink cartridge is cabale of at least 8,000 meters of writing, which is in absolute top class compared to what is on the market, and the cartridge can be replaced. The pens already have a long service life, which is good from a circular perspective. With recycled material in the Epoca Recycled Plastics, we take it further. This means that we use more circular material, in society and close to our production, says Mattias Holm.
− Circular economy can be promoted in many ways. This can be done on a large scale and from a complex system perspective, for example, the entire value chain of a product or business. Or it can be simplyfied as with Ballograf, where one material is exchanged for another. Hopefully, the collaboration will inspire others to try something new. The important thing is that the activities provide distinct results that contributes to a circular economy, says Mattias Nilsson, Sales and Marketing Manager at Stena Recycling.
Classic for discerning customers
The classic ballpoint pen Epoca was designed in 1959. Ballograf, Sweden's only pen manufacturer, still makes it. The bestseller Epoca has defended its place in a world with many mass-produced, low-cost pens. Epoca has become a classic in government agencies, banks, and other businesses where strict demands are placed on archive-resistant ink and reliable pens.
Mattias Holm at Ballograf is convinced that the new Epoca pen with recycled plastic can become a game-changer in, for example, procurements.
- We are happy to now be able to offer organisations and companies an even more circular product. It will be interesting to see how it is received. In addition to the pen, a package made of 100% recycled cardboard is also being developed.
High-quality plastic from discarded electronics
Like other manufacturers, Ballograf already uses plastics that are made from both cellulose and oil-based plastics. In the new product series, only so-called post-consumer plastic is used in the pen body. The anthracite gray pen is made of ABS plastic that has been recycled from electronic waste at Stena Nordic Recycling Center in Halmstad.
− It feels very positive to start phasing out virgin raw materials in the pens. It is also gratifying that recycled quality plastic can easily replace virgin raw material, says Mattias Holm.
Finished product in a few weeks
Production Manager Mats Eriksson describes a smooth transition to recycled material.
− It took a few weeks from material specification and delivered raw material to finished product. A pencil must withstand being dropped on the floor, squeezed in a bag, and so on. The material met our quality requirements. The recycled raw material also has the technical properties to be used straight into the tools we already use in the pen body's molding process.
Ballograf also looks to the future.
− We have more pen models where recycled ABS plastic can be used. It feels excellent to add more climate benefits to pens that already have a long product life in this way, concludes Mattias Holm.