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Innovations in the Packaging Industry | July 2018

In his book "Ecology and Experience: Reflections from a human ecological perspective," Richard J. Borden speaks about the environmental impact of the products we use in our everyday life. According to his book, Derfel saved all his trash for a year. Except for edibles, he stored everything. In one year, one-time used things filled about a hundred cubic feet area of his living room and kitchen. A majority of this pile comprised food packaging. This experiment very well conveys the need to start using eco-friendly packaging. Today, millions of tons of packaging waste contribute to landfill every year. Thus, the manufacturers are striving for biodegradable packaging for their products. Let's have a look at some remarkable environmentally free packaging innovation.

Alternative Read: Sustainable Packaging Solutions Implemented by 5 Leading MNCs

Packaging Innovation #1 - Biodegradable Film for Vegetables

AIMPLAS plastic technology center, under project BIOVEGE, has designed thin biodegradable films. These films are about 23 µm (micrometer) thick. Sugar obtained from watermelon and melon make this film. It is useful as shrink wrap films for covering and bunching vegetables and fruits. The film can decompose in a short time. It is beneficial in supermarkets for wrapping and selling individual units of vegetables.

Packaging Innovation - Biodegradable Film for Vegetables
Image Courtesy: AIMPLAS

You can read more information about this packaging here.

READ: 14 Eco-Friendly Packaging Materials To Fight Climate Change

Packaging Innovation #2 - Compostable Waste Bag

RKW SE has launched a convenient and compostable bag for collecting household waste. The starch derived from corn and polylactic acid (PLA) makes up this bag. People need not segregate this bag from compostable waste. It is better than paper bags for organic waste disposal as it won’t get soggy. It is available with Starseal Tie Handle. DIN Certco institute in Berlin (Germany) certified this waste bag as 100 percent compostable.

Packaging Innovation - 100% Compostable Waste Bag
Image Courtesy: Packaging Europe

You can read more information about this waste disposal bag here.

On March 23, 2018, Maharashtra government issued a ban on using plastic. It is also known as- the Maharashtra Plastic and Thermocol Products Notification 2018. Compostable waste bag and reusable polymer bags come up as a solution.

You can read in detail about the Plastic ban in Maharashtra.

Packaging Innovation #3 - Plant Based Beverage Packaging

BRASKEM’s I'm green™ is a drop-in bioplastic packaging. Although renewable materials make this plastic, the properties and performance remain the same. I'm green™ packaging incorporates PE (Polyethylene) derived from sugarcane ethanol. This packaging manufacturing releases fewer greenhouse gases in the atmosphere. Mainly used for beverages, this packaging is versatile and has wider applications. I'm green™ packaging is recyclable too.

Packaging Innovation - Plant Based Beverage Packaging
Image Courtesy: Mettler-Papier

You can read more information about this packaging here.

Packaging Innovation #4 - Soy-Ink for Printing

Printing is also an important aspect of the eco-friendly packaging. Soy-in for printing is an old technique introduced during the 1970s. It somehow lost its popularity because the cheaper printing options became available. But the metallic inks are hazardous at times. That is why the manufacturers have realized the sustainability of traditional soy-ink. Soy-ink is suitable for lithographic printing. Also printing with soy ink uses less ink than other inks. It is laser proof, has a lower boiling point, and is VOC (Volatile Organic Compounds) free. Soy-ink is very beneficial for food packaging.

Packaging Innovation - Soy-Ink for Printing
Image Courtesy: GrowNextGen

You can read more information about the benefits of soy-ink here.

Read: What kind of printing suits your packaging?

Packaging Innovation #5 - 100% Plant-Based Eco-friendly Packaging

SIG, a leading aseptic packaging manufacturer has introduced SIGNATURE PACK packaging. SIGNATURE PACK packaging is 100 percent plant-based. The packaging is made from 82 percent FSCTM certified wood sourced paperboard. This packaging doesn’t use aluminum lamination and is lightweight. It is suitable for liquid packaging like milk. Manufacturing this packaging has 66 percent less impact on the environment than the standard carton. The packaging has LCA (Labor Condition Application) benefits and is a sustainable trend in eco-friendly packaging. This innovation has also won the Beverage Innovation Award 2017.

Packaging Innovation - 100% Plant-Based Eco-friendly Packaging
Image Courtesy: Packaging Strategies

You can read more information about this packaging here.

You can also do your part by using eco-friendly materials to develop your packaging.  See how this brand nailed the eco-friendly packaging game!

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