Update on the successful, ongoing partnership with PET‑Verpackungen GmbH Deutschland: First OnePET® containing KeyKegs confirmed. A decade on, it’s time to take a pause and review the key turning points in the OneCircle journey. From the outset, our business has been about joined-up thinking and a collective effort to succeed.
In 2011, KeyKeg® Slimline was still in its development phase, and every “Eureka” moment needs a catalyst to go from innovative idea to finished product. The future of OneCircle (previously known as Lightweight Containers) was shaped by a meeting one cold December day in 2011, when Jan-Dirk Veenendaal and Bert Hanssen from OneCircle met with Hubert Rebhan and Matthias Raab from PET-Verpackungen GmbH Deutschland in Grossbreitenbach. That day our creative spark found a home.
Shortly after that initial meeting, production of the KeyKeg® preform began in Thuringia, followed by the new UniKeg® preform a short time later. KeyKeg® demand grew, and production numbers continued to double year after year.
Partnerships have always been at the heart of OneCircle’s values. Since day one, when Jan-Dirk Veenendaal and Bert Hanssen decided to work together, we have selectively expanded our network of partners, always seeking out ethical, circular-thinking counterparts. Communication between our teams and our partners always had a tone of respect and quiet determination. These qualities helped us overcome any language barrier we encountered as we expanded - because respect sounds the same in every language. This considerate approach to international communication continues to support our growth into new global markets.
Just four years after that initial meeting our ambitions had outgrown the Den Helder production site. This was a direct result of the fortunate, early decision to work with PET-Verpackungen GmbH Deutschland. This strong working relationship allowed us to scale up at a pivotal moment in our company’s history. The Grossbreitenbach site was selected for the third KeyKeg® production line. Within one year, a brand-new state-of-the-art production line was built in a brand new production facility that was to become the main KeyKeg® production site.
KeyKeg® and UniKeg® were designed with a circular economy in mind and now had the facilities and capacity to meet the increase in demand. As single-use plastics became a growing concern, OneCircle made the conscious choice to accelerate our plans for a fully circular economy. To reflect this need for a recyclable, circular solution, Lightweight Containers confirmed its commitment to sustainability by renaming itself “OneCircle”, moving forward once again with the support of PET-Verpackungen GmbH Deutschland.
Challenges arose during the pandemic in 2020, but were turned into opportunities by our forward-thinking team, OneCircle was determined to innovate once again. Like many businesses, we wanted to help others and support our global partners in the struggling beverage industry. Having been so heavily impacted during the shutdown of the hospitality sector, there was an expected slow-down in demand for KeyKegs. Our team used the time wisely, to adapt and pushed harder to develop OnePET®, a material that could improve our overall circularity. As always, PET-Verpackungen GmbH Deutschland was eager to support this new development and tested the new circular material in the preform injection moulds. The blowing process of these new preforms was validated by our own Den Helder operational team, and the first OnePET containing KeyKegs was manufactured. It consists of 85% recycled PET - of which 45% originates from our own post-industrial and community connected (post-consumer) KeyKeg® PET.
Regular production will see the KeyKeg® circular material content rise to approximately 45%, surpassing the EU legislative demands for 2030.
****Statement Oliver Wiegand, owner and CEO PET-Verpackungen GmbH Deutschland
“PET-Verpackungen GmbH Deutschland and OneCircle have been partners for many years and have always had a work ethic that matched our own. With a high level of innovation, flat hierarchies, and short decision-making paths in both companies, we have been able to respond to market fluctuations with shared agility and determination to succeed.
Today, we produce in our Grossbreitenbach plant a highly sustainable product with an extremely good shelf-life, suitable for a wide range of products, and 100% recyclable - including all its add-on parts. We very much appreciate the long-standing and fruitful cooperation with OneCircle and are proud to supply everything in this project - from the preform to the fully equipped and decorated KeyKeg®.”