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Dr. Tom Brady’s Fun Fact-Filled History Guide About the World’s Most Recycled Bottles Gets Exhibited at London Book Fair 2023

Dr. Tom Brady may not be a household name, but the invention his book documents is a common sight in every house: the PET bottle. This innocuous bottle is the product of a surprisingly complex history that spans the business and engineering challenges of the time. The book has been recently exhibited at the prestigious London Book Fair, sharing its surprising insights on an item many take for granted.

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“In this bottle’s history is not just my story, but the stories of my colleagues who revolutionized sustainable packaging.”

The London Book Fair just concluded, and it was a wonderful opportunity for authors to share new ideas. These include even a fresh perspective on modern conveniences that many people take for granted. For Dr. Tom Brady, the best example is the humble PET bottle. That’s why he published “History of the PET Bottle” and worked to have it exhibited at the book trade fair.

In “History of the PET Bottle,” he describes his own role in the bottle’s initial development, working as Senior Scientist at Owens-Illinois. Yet after O-I realized the conflict its glass manufacturing business had with the new packaging technology, Brady had to move on in order to properly build his idea. Alongside it, he had to build a new company: Plastic Technologies, Inc.

What follows is a very storied account of how PTI innovated packaging for a number of major brands that now all use PET bottle technology, including Coca-Cola, P&G, and more. The book also covers how PTI pioneered developments in sustainable plastic, from manufacturing support to even laboratory testing.

Today, the PET bottle is regarded as one of the most recyclable products in the world and still sees constant innovation. Companies like PTI are still striving to develop plastics that are more reusable and are reused constantly.

The London Book Fair 2023 hosted many panels and exhibits focusing on issues like climate action and eco-friendlier industries. Dr. Tom Brady hopes that his book had given attendees some useful historical information to help along. To order a copy of “History of the PET Bottle,” visit Amazon and Barnes & Noble.

Readers are encouraged to check out Dr. Tom Brady’s other books Plastic Technologies, Inc. and Impact of Owens-Illinois On the World.

“History of the PET Bottle”
Author | Dr. Tom Brady
Published date | August 10, 2022
Publisher | Bookbaby
Genre | Business History

Author Bio
Dr. Brady is one of the pioneers of the modern PET packaging industry. He began his career carrying out fundamental research on plastic packaging technology and led the commercialization of PET bottle technology at Owens-Illinois, before leaving to found Plastic Technologies, Inc. (PTI) and six other packaging-related companies that have continued to lead the development and commercialization of PET packaging.

Over a period of 40 years, Dr. Brady and his colleagues have received more than 150 patents relating to PET packaging and recycling and “many of the products you buy every day are sold in plastic containers designed by one of the PTI companies,” he told Plastics News.

After graduating from the University of Michigan with a PhD in Plastic Materials Engineering, Dr. Brady joined Owens-Illinois, Inc. as a Senior Scientist in 1972, just as the carbonated soft drink companies were asking their suppliers to create and offer family-size carbonated beverage containers, which required an industry-wide conversion from glass and aluminum to plastic.

As a result, and over a short 10-year period, Dr. Brady and his colleagues, along with other industry plastic package suppliers, created an entirely new industry to supply sustainable PET packaging to the beverage, food, and personal care product brand owners.

When Owens-Illinois began questioning its involvement in plastic packaging because plastic was beginning to impact its glass container business, Dr. Brady and many of his R&D colleagues who had helped to diversify Owens-Illinois’ business portfolio left the company to either start or operate other major businesses which helped to transform the entire packaging industry.

Dr. Brady has written and published three books to capture his entire 50 year career in plastic packaging, including a) “The Impact of Owens-Illinois on the World” which tells the stories of thirty former O-I employees who, without competing with Owens-Illinois, employed their talents to create or nurture many dynamic and successful business enterprises, b) "“History of the PET Bottle”” which tells the story of the development of the PET bottle from 1972 until today, and c) “Plastic Technologies, Inc. - Our Story” which captures the contributions of hundreds of PTI and PTI Company employees and owners to the plastic packaging industry over the past 36 years.

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