Updated on August 23, 2017
Sony has set a target of reducing virgin plastic used per product by 10% from the fiscal 2013 level, by fiscal 2020. To achieve this target, Sony has been working to incorporate recycled plastics into products while also reducing product size. In fiscal 2016, virgin plastic used per product was down 6.9% from the fiscal 2013 level. The main factors in the reduction were the increased use of recycled plastic in televisions, media players, and camcorders, and reductions in the size and weight of game consoles.
To reduce the consumption of virgin plastic, Sony has expanded the use of recycled plastics in a broad range of product categories by developing recycled plastics while elevating quality and reducing manufacturing costs. Sony recently developed a recycled plastic for audio products that actually improves sound quality while retaining a high percentage of recycled content. This recycled plastic was used in soundbars and home theater systems that were sold in 2016.
In fiscal 2016, the Sony Group used some 16,000 tons of recycled plastic* in its products. This amount consisted of approximately 67% recycled plastic content from scraps and other waste materials generated from manufacturing by the Sony Group and other companies, and approximately 33% post-consumer recycled plastic content from used products, containers, and other sources.
In 2011, Sony began practical use of Sustainable Oriented Recycled Plastic (SORPLAS™), a flame-retardant recycled plastic made possible by a proprietary compounding technology that combines an original, non-halogen and non-phosphorus, flame retardant—itself produced using a Sony-developed process—and waste plastics (polycarbonate resin) from various sources in an optimal blend. Thanks to Sony's novel flame-retardant, which makes it possible to impart flame-retardancy by the addition of a very small amount of less than 1% or less of total content, SORPLAS™ not only surpasses conventional flame-retardant plastics in terms of durability, flame-retardancy and recyclability, but also achieves an outstanding utilization rate of up to 99% waste plastics. The effective utilization of SORPLAS™ has been shown to reduce CO2 emissions in product manufacturing by up to 80%.* Moreover, Sony's versatile waste-plastic compounding technology makes it possible to tailor SORPLAS™ to the needs of a variety of products. Sony first used SORPLAS™ in its products in 2011 and has since incorporated it into a wide variety of Sony products. Then, in 2014, Sony commenced external sales. Sony will continue to make SORPLAS™ widely available also outside the group, promote resource recycling, and contribute to a society with a reduced environmental impact.