top of page

Digital Watermarks Initiative HolyGrail 2.0 announces collaborative project with FiliGrade Sustainable Watermarks

Press release for immediate release – Brussels, 27 June 2024 – The HolyGrail 2.0 Initiative is pleased to announce its engagement in a new project aimed at testing the capability of the CurvCode watermarking technology to close the loop on HDPE milk bottles in the Netherlands.


The packaging industry is abuzz as the application of mandatory EU-wide rules for packaging and packaging waste approaches. Among others is the specific obligation to include a certain percentage of recycled content in plastic packaging, which all the more requires a transformational change in the industry, moving away from a linear model to embrace full circularity.


Digitalisation through pioneering technologies offers a unique opportunity to drive this revolution in the waste industry. Championing the crucial role of cross-value chain collaboration, packaging converter ALPLA, dairy product manufacturer Farm Dairy, technology provider FiliGrade Sustainable Watermarks, machine supplier Pellenc ST, and HolyGrail 2.0 have joined forces in an initiative that aims to enable the circular deployment of HDPE beverage containers in the Netherlands.


The first project phase will consist of running sorting trials in a semi-industrial setting on HDPE milk containers that carry the CurvCode – separating them from standard packaging waste to create a pure stream. Produced by ALPLA, the samples will be marked with the CurvCode watermark, then contaminated with milk and labelled to mimic post-consumer use, before being shipped to Pellenc ST’s headquarters for testing. Under the supervision of the HG2.0 technical team, the trials will be conducted via the FiliGrade/Pellenc ST prototype sorting module over the Summer on around 4,000 items. Successful completion of the sorting trial at semi-industrial level will bring the CurvCode technology to TRL 7. The result report will be produced by HG2.0 Technical Management Team and disseminated with relevant stakeholders from the HDPE milk-container supply chain in the Netherlands, paving the way for the next phases.



PR contact details

AIM – European Brands Association: Margherita Trombetti,

FiliGrade Sustainable Watermarks: Marien De Lint,


About Digital Watermarks Initiative HolyGrail 2.0

The Digital Watermarks Initiative HolyGrail 2.0 – driven by AIM - European Brands Association and powered by the Alliance to End Plastic Waste – is a pilot project with the objective to prove the technical viability of digital watermarks for accurate sorting of packaging waste, as well as the economic viability of the business case at large-scale. Digital watermarks are imperceptible codes, the size of a postage stamp, covering the surface of a consumer goods packaging and carrying a wide range of attributes. The aim is that once the packaging has entered into a waste sorting facility, the digital watermark can be detected and decoded by a high-resolution camera on the sorting line, which then – based on the transferred attributes (e.g. food vs. non-food) – is able to sort the packaging in corresponding streams. This would result in better and more accurate sorting streams, thus consequently in higher quality recyclates benefiting the complete packaging value chain.


Commenting has been turned off.
bottom of page