Green Glass

Green Glass registered a worldwide patent in 1982 for the technology of glueing the base to the glass (as pictured) – although turning bottles into glasses has been known for many decades. Ten years ago, Green Glass's factory near Pretoria, South Africa, was overwhelmed with export orders, but today, that factory no longer operates
Green Glass thereafter became contractually tied to the social welfare programme of a larger company and shifted its production method into shipping container units bought by ''franchised'' operators.  A container unit cost $100,000 at minimum.
Working at full speed, about 600 glasses per day can be made from a container unit, creating excellent income if it is managed correctly.
Until recently Green Glass tried to sell these container-plants to communities, and discouraged private sales.
But according to one of the two original entrepreneurs, Philip Tetley (the other is Sean Penrith), politics among communities and councils have largely sabotaged attempts to sell there, and it is now happy to sell to all-comers.
Green Glass in South Africa was damaged by the rapid emigration of Penrith from South Africa after a serious crime incident.
Since then the marketing of the concept of industrial conversion of bottles into glass products seems to have done better overseas than in South Africa. Today a large British plant is producing many more of the glasses than combined South African production (from container units), and its sales are booked for a year ahead, according to Tetley.
However, Tetley expects many more container units to be sold in South Africa and the rest of Africa in the near future, now that they are being sold to all-comers.
In a more recent Green Glass-patented technology development in the US, the neck of the bottle is not cut off (as with Green Glass's traditional technology), but with heat treatement, it is spun and flaired into the base. This is relatively high-tech compared to traditional technology. Production is on an 80-head machine, but it involves no cutting and pasting, and one production unit can produce thousands of glasses per day. The end-product can be made into any shape and it costs about a tenth of the traditionally-produced product, although plant set-up costs are high.
However, the original technology in the container units will still be available in Africa and elsewhere, for entrepreneurs.
Tetley: Tel 012-3056319 or 082-4475131.