02 Nov 2018 --- Dutch design graduate Don Kwaning has created a bio-based packaging material from the pith of a cosmopolitan and typically unwanted weed called soft rush. By separating the pith from the fibers, Kwaning discovered that paper, textile, foam and construction materials can be produced for use in a range of packaging applications, including dried foods packs. Kwaning speaks to PackagingInsights about the inspiration behind this novel concept, the technical process, and the challenges of commercialization.
16 Oct 2018 --- Biodegradable coffee capsules that consumers can dispose of in their home compost have been developed by Golden Compound, in cooperation with Alpla. The capsules are made from Golden Compound green material; comprised from the natural fibers of sunflower seed shells. The capsule and filter fleece is completely biodegradable within a maximum of six months and is free from aluminum and genetically modified organisms.
11 Oct 2018 --- The packaging solution is sometimes right in front of your eyes. That is the view of Simone Caronni, Pietro Gaeli and Paolo Stefano Gentile, three product designers from NABA University in Milan, who have created cone-shaped fries packaging from discarded potato peels. Fries companies produce a lot of potato peels: the idea of this project is to use this material to save on waste while producing eco-conscious packaging, the trio says, and so the Peel Saver was born.
04 Oct 2018 --- VTT Technical Research Center of Finland, a leading European research and technology organization, are using science and technology to prove to the industry that plastic can be part of a strong circular economy, with the addition of bio-based raw materials and sustainable design, as well as a three-pronged approach to recycling: mechanical, chemical and biological. PackagingInsights got in contact with the team at VTT to detail some of their key developments, as well as their outlooks for the future of packaging.
24 Sep 2018 --- Danimer Scientific, a developer and manufacturer of biodegradable plastic products, has created the first fully biodegradable plastic straw using its Nodax polyhydroxyalkanoate (PHA) material. Straws composed of the material are effectively biodegraded in landfills, waste treatment facilities and oceans, according to the developer.
20 Sep 2018 --- European Bioplastics (EUBP) has reported that The European Parliament’s (EP) report on the European Strategy for Plastics adopted last week by the plenary testifies to the increasing acknowledgment and endorsement of the value propositions of bioplastics. Rapporteur Mark Demesmaeker highlights the potential role of bio-based plastics and of biodegradable plastics in establishing a strong circular EU bioeconomy. The EP report ties in with provisions for feedstock differentiation and use of biodegradable and compostable plastics recently adopted in the Waste Directive and Packaging Directive.
18 Sep 2018 --- A Plastic Planet – an organization which openly advocates a 100 percent discontinuation of plastics in food and beverage packaging – could be found tucked away in a far corner of the Packaging Innovations show in London last week. The major theme of the show was the ongoing plastics conversation, epitomized by the widely attended The Big Plastics Debate, in which industry-leading figures debated the role of plastics in a more sustainable future. Meanwhile, the team at A Plastic Planet came armed with its famed Plastic Free Aisle exhibit and a wall full of “Plastic Free” trust marks in a clear indication of its stance.
14 Sep 2018 --- Biodegradable and compostable plastics do not prevent plastic pollution and should not be an excuse to keep consuming single-use plastics, the European Parliament recognized in a vote on Wednesday. The Parliament voted to strengthen the European Commission’s plans to slash plastic pollution, under the European Strategy for Plastics in a Circular Economy launched in January 2018. The move has been welcomed by green groups such as Friends of the Earth.
10 Sep 2018 --- Fraunhofer Institute for Silicate Research has been awarded the “Circular Materials Challenge” prize for its development of bioormocers, a basic material which significantly improves on the barrier properties and shelf-life capabilities of pre-existing biopolymers. The prize was awarded to Dr Sabine Amberg-Schwab, a senior scientist at Fraunhofer, by the New Plastics Economy Initiative. The initiative was launched in 2016 by the Ellen MacArthur Foundation to promote new ways to counter the oceans plastics pollution.
31 Aug 2018 --- Lucozade Sport has announced plans to trial plastic-free sports drinks and gels encased in an edible seaweed outer layer. Brand owner Lucozade Ribena Suntory has teamed up with materials engineering startup Skipping Rocks Lab to trial their revolutionary Ooho product at selected running events beginning in September 2018. The trial will expand to wider UK based events in the new year, a Lucozade Ribena Suntory spokesperson tells PackagingInsights.
29 Aug 2018 --- Waste coffee grounds could be used to produce biodegradable plastics, a student from Macquarie University, Australia, has found in his Ph.D. research. Researcher Dominik Kopp developed a method to turn coffee grounds into lactic acid, which can then be used to produce biodegradable plastics.
27 Aug 2018 --- Bioplastic packaging is gaining popularity in a global market driven by sustainability demands. Yet the inherent difficulties in finding mainstream definitions for the many complex variations in bio-based materials means that bioplastics do not always get the attention from regulatory bodies that they deserve. PackagingInsights speaks exclusively to Hasso von Pogrell, Managing Director of European Bioplastics (EUBP), about the message his organization is working to promote.
17 Aug 2018 --- European Bioplastics believe that EU Member States will now be able to comprehensively acknowledge the benefits and the functionality of certified compostable plastic after a successful demonstration of the environmental benefits of the material. Researchers at ETH Zurich and the Swiss Federal Institute of Aquatic Science and Technology (Eawag) succeeded in an interdisciplinary study to demonstrate that soil microorganisms metabolically utilized the carbon in the PBAT polymer both for energy production and also to build up microbial biomass.
30 Jul 2018 --- Bioplastic manufacturer Bio-On has completed the first test phase for the “most modern production hub of bioplastics in the world.” All tests on machines and software are positive and on schedule. The company confirms the full production regime will be ready by autumn. This is the first factory to produce special bioplastic PHAs, 100 percent natural and biodegradable, for advanced product niches with high added value such as microscopic beads (microbeads) for the cosmetics industry. The total investment for the production center and for the new research laboratories is €20 million (US$23 million).
25 Jul 2018 --- In an attempt to lower the use of single-use plastics in takeaway packaging, online delivery service Just Eat has announced a new UK six-week trial of seaweed-based sauce sachets for ketchup and garlic herb sauces. The Ooho! Seaweed Sauce sachets, created in partnership with sustainable packaging development company Skipping Rocks Lab, decompose in a matter of weeks.
25 Jul 2018 --- Researchers at the Georgia Institute of Technology have created a compostable material derived from crab shells and tree fibers which, the team believes, could provide a more sustainable alternative to flexible plastic packaging used for fresh foods. The new material is made by spraying multiple layers of chitin from crab shells and cellulose from trees to form a flexible film similar to plastic packaging film.
12 Jul 2018 --- Germany-based film solution specialists RKW is set to launch a biodegradable star-sealed bag for organic household waste. Certified as fully compostable by DIN Certco, it is also the first T-shirt starseal bag made from more than 50 percent renewable materials. It mainly consists of starch and polylactic acid (PLA) and other biodegradable components. The star-sealed bottom of the bag also boasts liquid leakage prevention capabilities. It is produced at RKW Vietnam in Ho Chi Minh City.
09 Jul 2018 --- The Australian Organics Recycling Association (AORA) and the Australian Bioplastics Association (ABA) have published a joint position paper on Certified Compostable Bioplastics. The paper outlines what steps are necessary to have a material bioplastic verified. ABA also offers an online verification program for companies that wish to have their claims of conformance to the Australian Standard verified.
05 Jul 2018 --- Austrian packaging company Alpha and Swiss transportation company Fromm have embarked on a collaboration in relation to PET recycling with the aim to reduce CO2 emissions through saved transport and increase PET recycling rates. Both companies operate recycling plants for PET bottles, thus ensuring the necessary supply of materials for their own production facilities.
04 Jul 2018 --- Plastics technology specialist Aimplas has pioneered the creation of new biodegradable films and nets for horticultural products, food colorants and additives from harvest waste. The BIOVEGE project took horticultural waste from the fields of Almería and successfully converted it into high-value packaging in line with the philosophy of the circular economy.