Sustainability & Recyclability

16 Jan 2019 --- UK supermarket chain Waitrose has ceased using black plastic to package hundreds of its own-label products. It plans to completely eradicate hard-to-recycle black plastics from own-label products by the end of 2019. Waitrose is also encouraging customers to bring reusable containers to the supermarket’s fresh service counters to minimize the use of plastic bags.
15 Jan 2019 --- Johnson & Johnson Vision has partnered with UK recycling company TerraCycle to launch a nationwide program to recycle contact lenses. Over a third (39 percent) of contact lenses wearers are unsure of contact lenses recyclability status, research by Johnson & Johnson Vision has found. In reality, with the help of TerraCycle, they can be recycled. The program also includes the recycling of the blister and foil packaging after use.
14 Jan 2019 --- Research focused on understanding the effects of microplastics has intensified after a series of discoveries found that the tiny plastic particles are polluting marine environments, food supplies and our bodies. Dr. Natalia Ivleva, a researcher at the Technical University of Munich (TUM), has developed new analytical methods for the identification and quantification of microplastic and recently shared her findings.
14 Jan 2019 --- Temperpack, a company positioned to “solve thermal packaging problems through sustainable design,” has raised US$22.5 million in Series B financing led by Revolution Growth. New investors Harbert Growth Partners, Arborview Capital and Tao Capital Partners, and existing investor SJF Ventures, also participated in the round. The cash injection is hoped to expand the business and to engineer new products in response to increasing demand for sustainable thermal packaging.
14 Jan 2019 --- Family-owned Bavarian mustard producers Mari-Senf has launched a new Bag-in-Box dispensing system which has “huge plastic waste reduction potential.” Designed by DS Smith’s UK Rapak division in collaboration with Swedish dispensing specialists Asept, the Bag-in-Box design aims to minimize serving and clean-up time for street food kiosks, making it ideal for events such as Germany’s Oktoberfest.
11 Jan 2019 --- In Part 1 of Packaging trends 2019, PackagingInsights explored the biggest driver in packaging today: sustainability. Sustainability is at the center of another major trend – the rise of e-commerce – which is set for a pivotal year, especially after Amazon announced that its Frustration-Free Packaging (FFP) program will be enforced with financial penalties as of October 1, 2019, in five major EU countries and August 1, 2019, in the US and Canada. Part 2 explores this major trend in addition to another anticipated development in 2019: the continuing popularization of connective packaging technologies.
11 Jan 2019 --- Plastic film specialists Südpack will begin the commercial rollout of its easy-to-recycle Ecocraft Skin packaging this year. Ecocraft Skin is aimed at helping meat, fresh fish and cheese products attract attention in the refrigerated and frozen food sections with its paper-like look. The pack is designed to improve sustainability levels while, significantly, it does not require food manufacturers to invest in new thermoforming machines.
10 Jan 2019 --- Sustainable cannabis packaging manufacturer Sana Packaging has partnered with Oceanworks to supply a new line of cannabis packaging made from reclaimed ocean plastic. While hemp bioplastics will remain its core focus, the use of reclaimed ocean plastic is hoped to add a new dimension to the portfolio. As the regulatory environment surrounding cannabis use continues to soften, with the US’s recent legalization of hemp leading the way, the cannabis market is expected to become increasingly busy. This may present a host of opportunities for the packaging industry.
08 Jan 2019 --- Packaging trends in 2018 were dominated by sustainability action, largely fueled by rising anti-plastic sentiment. It was a year that saw widespread bans on single-use plastic items, the announcement of The New Plastics Economy Global Commitment and the launch of the world’s first plastic-free supermarket aisles in Amsterdam and London. At the same time, the milestone merger of two plastic giants in Amcor and Bemis suggests that there are still major players ready to invest in the future of the material. In the first of a two part report on packaging trends, PackagingInsights speaks to several industry experts about what to anticipate in 2019, starting with the most hotly contested trend: sustainability.
07 Jan 2019 --- As expectations from consumers and customers become ever-more stringent around how their e-commerce parcels are delivered – sustainably and safely – Sealed Air has been at the forefront of innovation. Speaking to Dan Healey, Director of Sustainability for Sealed Air’s Product Care division, PackagingInsights explores how the company has developed its e-commerce packaging offerings and how being “recyclable” alone is far from being a silver bullet for sustainable e-commerce design.
04 Jan 2019 --- As 2019 kicks off, UK supermarket chain Iceland revealed encouraging results from its reverse vending machine scheme for plastic bottles. Iceland has been rewarding eco-conscious shoppers with 10p vouchers for every deposited bottle since June. Also in recycling, Indorama Ventures is raising its sustainability ambitions with the acquisition of a PET recycling facility in Alabama, US. In this weeks’ big research news, light protection technologists Noluma warned that insufficient packaging can result in the rapid degradation of dairy nutrients by up to 51 percent.
04 Jan 2019 --- Bioplastic innovators Bio-On and Italian fruit producers Rivoira have signed a strategic agreement to develop new bioplastic materials made from fruit and vegetable waste for the packaging of fresh fruits and vegetables. The ZEROPACK project, founded by Bio-On and now co-owned by Rivoria, will see the partnership produce 100 percent natural and biodegradable films, crates, small and large containers, fruit supports and labels.
03 Jan 2019 --- UK Education Secretary Damian Hinds has urged schools to eradicate single-use plastics by 2022 and find more sustainable alternatives to items such as straws, bags and bottles. Hinds wants pupils to be made aware of the scourge of plastic pollution while Surfers Against Sewage believes that schools have the power to incentivize suppliers to produce more eco-friendly packaging.
03 Jan 2019 --- Switching material from plastic to paperboard can reduce the climate impact of packaging by 99 percent in some instances, according to a recent study conducted by IVL Swedish Environmental Research Institute for Iggesund Paperboard (Iggesund). The study investigated some of the most common packaging types, including plastic packs, and found that in every comparison, paper generated the most environmentally beneficial performance.
02 Jan 2019 --- Technical Research Centre of Finland (VTT) has joined the international Think Beyond Plastic’s User Facility Network as an R&D partner. Its role will be to support the New Plastic Economy Innovation Center’s innovators and entrepreneurs by offering R&D services to accelerate the development of innovations in the area of circular plastics. The collaboration was announced at the New Plastics Economy Investor Forum on 7th December in Frankfurt.
02 Jan 2019 --- The UK government has launched a consultation to increase the 5p plastic bag charge to 10p and extend the scheme to all retailers. The move comes as part of Environment Secretary Michael Gove’s strategy to reduce single-use plastic waste and transform throwaway culture.
21 Dec 2018 --- European Plastic Converters (EuPC) and European Bioplastics (EUBP) have vocalized concerns over the specifics of the EU’s provisional agreement to ban 10 types of single-use plastic items as part of its new Plastics Strategy. EuPC believes that the proposal is a “superficial legislative text” which fails to recognize potential environmental consequences and improve waste management. Meanwhile, EUBP is concerned that the Directive fails to acknowledge the potential of biodegradable plastics as part of a more sustainable future.
21 Dec 2018 --- This year saw a flurry of activity in plastics, largely fueled by concerns around the rapidly rising levels of plastic waste seeping into the environment. In respect to sustainability, huge strides were made, including high profile, strategic collaborations which attracted some of the largest names in the business. Innovative biodegradable and compostable materials also sprouted in parallel to rising anti-plastic sentiment.
20 Dec 2018 --- Sustainable plastic innovator Loop Industries has signed a Global Alliance Agreement with thyssenkrupp’s Industrial Solutions division, Uhde Inventa-Fischer. The Alliance intends to combine Loop’s depolymerization technology with thyssenkrupp’s PET Melt-To-Resin technology. The move is expected to increase the availability, resource-efficiency and cost-effectiveness of 100 percent sustainable PET on a global scale.
20 Dec 2018 --- In-mold labeling supplier Verstraete IML has become the latest signatory to the New Plastics Economy Global Commitment, “A Line in the Sand,” led by the Ellen MacArthur Foundation in collaboration with UN Environment. In line with the Global Commitment’s objectives, Verstraete IML is innovating to produce plastic labels that are reusable and recyclable, thereby eliminating waste at source.