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Schwalbe collects 20,000 used tyres from Freising cellar for recycling system

Schwalbe has collected 20,000 used tyres from a cellar in Freising.

For 23 years, Ingo Ruhland collected tyres in the basement below his bike store of the same name in Freising, Germany, hoping that the used tyres could eventually be recycled instead of incinerated.

Now the time had come and around 20,000 tyres could be fed into the Schwalbe Recycling System, which began as a pilot phase in January 2022.

Ruhland said: “I always hoped that one day some company in the tyre industry would manage to offer real recycling. Now that has worked – a big thanks to Schwalbe.”

The tyres were carried out of a former beer cellar and then stacked in a truck container. When he heard about the official presentation of Schwalbe’s tyre recycling in the summer of 2022, his joy was ‘great’: “I rejoiced, because this was exactly the information I had been waiting for – for a total of 23 years.”

Ruhland is a committed cyclist, and he sees the sustainable approach as a prime example. “The tyres are not trash, they are recyclables. We should be more concerned in all areas to recycle such material instead of always mining new raw materials.”

Now the basement is empty, or as Ruhland said: “It’s finally cleaned up.” Used tyres that accrue at
Radl Ruhland in the future will now end up in the Schwalbe Recycling System box and will
be picked up regularly.

Read more: Continental rolls out verification markers to boost natural rubber supply chain transparency

Schwalbe began the pilot phase in January 2022 with around 50 dealers, and by the end of November the number had already reached more than 1,300.

Please note that the Schwalbe Recycling System for tyres is currently only available in Germany whilst the logistics are arranged for other countries in Europe. To be informed when the service will be available in the UK email recycling@schwalbe.co.uk. Email the same address to register for the Schwalbe tube recycling programme which is operating in the UK.

How the Schwalbe recycling system works:

1) Drop off used tyres at participating dealers
2) Transport of full recycling boxes to recycling partner Pyrum Innovations
3) Shredding of used tyres into rubber granulate, steel, fabric
4) Pyrum Thermolysis: Rubber granulate is converted into secondary raw materials (in pyrolysis
oven at 700°C under oxygen exclusion)
– Process gas: Supplies complete plant with electricity
– Pyrolysis oil: Used in chemical industry as a substitute for crude oil
– Pyrolysis coke (rCB) goes to 5)
5) Recycled into new Schwalbe products

Rebecca Morley

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