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5 sustainable packaging trends to watch in 2017

Companies have shifted their attention to packaging and are realizing the importance of sustainable packaging.

A lot of waste comes from disposing packaging, most of the waste ends up in landfills. Because of this, sustainable packaging has gained popularity. Companies are looking into ways to incorporate sustainable materials and practices in their packaging to create less of an impact on the planet.

Here are some of the sustainable packaging trends to look for in 2017

  1. Labeling will get clearer – Make it clear on the product packaging how to dispose of the packaging and clarify if there are sustainability claims. Clear labeling will also help your customers to be better informed. Being honest with customers will go a long way.
  2. Lightweight packaging will be embraced– Lightweight packaging has numerous benefits. Less material is needed to produce packages, manufacturing costs are lower, the environmental impact from transport is minimized and less waste is sent to landfills. The only negative is that when the recovery rates increase, it will remove the value from the recycling stream and undermine the economic incentive to recycle.
  3. Increased use of recyclable materials – The easiest way to ensure packaging has the least amount of impact is by using recyclable materials to manufacture the packaging.
  4. Edible packaging – Edible packaging eliminates packaging waste altogether; you would eat the packaging the product came in. Some of the challenges include: logistical problems like the risk of the packaging material being broken or consumer’s impressions that the packaging is unhygienic.
  5. Packages will slim down – The extra space within the package is creating additional material that needs to be disposed of. The goal is minimal packaging.

 

Full article: http://www.beveragedaily.com/Processing-Packaging/5-sustainable-packaging-trends-to-watch-in-2017

Source: Beverage Daily

Wrapping up 2016: Packaging Trends to Watch

Here are some sustainability trends in packaging that we think will gain momentum in 2017:

Multiple uses: Great packaging protects not only your product, but also your brand. But what if the packaging is part of the product itself? That is the case with innovations such as the expandable bowl by Swedish design studio Tomorrow Machine. Using 100% bio-based and biodegradable materials, the company created a cellulose wrapper that hugs freeze-dried food and morphs into a bowl when hot water is poured into the spout. The bowl ― a sustainable packaging award winner ― is now in good company and we expect more will follow.

Unconventional materials: Egg shells, fermented sugars, barley, and wheat ribbons. Those were the materials used to create, in turn:

  • Bio-compostable films: Nanoparticles from waste eggshells helped researchers at Tuskegee University in Alabama make a plastic film that is completely sustainable and 700% more flexible than other bioplastic blends. Film made of the new material could be used in retail packaging, grocery bags and food containers.
  • A prototype PHBottle: The European PHBottle project aims to initially create a bottle, cap, and sleeve, although use in other applications (non-food packaging and non-packaging uses) will be tested. The bioplastic material used to make the bottle comes from the transformation of organic matter found in juice processing by-products.
  • Edible six-pack rings for beer: Imagine washing down the six-pack ring with your favorite beer. Although that moment is not quite here yet, the future is looking up for a piece of plastic that is notorious for ensnaring wildlife. The first bio-degradable edible six-pack ring for beer is the result of a partnership between Saltwater Brewery; We Believers, an advertising agency; and Entelequia, Inc., a small startup in Mexico. Made from barley and wheat ribbons spent grain from the brewing process, the rings are safe for wildlife to eat and sturdy enough to support the cans.

Reusable packaging: The throw-away culture is not for everyone. In fact, Mintel’s Global Packaging Trends 2017 shows 63% of U.S. consumers actively seek out packages they can re-use. More than half of consumers also say they would prefer to buy foods with minimal or even no packaging. With such great demand for waste reduction, innovation is bound to pick up even more momentum.

 

Full article: http://www.ebnonline.com/author.asp?section_id=2171&doc_id=282307

Source: EBN

Europe to lead green packaging market; bioplastics to flourish

Per Allied Market Research, the recycle content packaging segment is expected to grow with a CAGR of 4.92 percent to reach $207,543 million globally by 2022.

Bioplastic is a new ecological alternative to oil-based polymers with promising growth in pharmaceutical sectors. Bioplastics have flourished in healthcare and pharmaceutical markets and are accepted as an alternative for polymer oil-based products. Reverse logistics and an increase in the number of legislations for ecological packaging techniques have facilitated the recycle of municipal wastes.

The European region is expected to continue to lead the green packaging market, followed by North America. The German green packaging market is estimated at a CAGR of 5.10 percent, while the Middle East region is estimated to grow at a CAGR of 3.15 percent. The North American and Asia-Pacific regions jointly accounted for more than half of the total 2015 share.

Rise in hygiene and health concerns among consumers boosts the demand for green packaging with applications in sustainable packaging.

 

To read the full article, click here: http://www.greentechlead.com/waste-management/europe-lead-green-packaging-market-bioplastics-flourish-31738

Source: Greentechlead

 

How supply chains affect packaging

Michael Kuebler, technical director of North America distribution testing at Smithers Pira in Lansing, MI., guides a team of packaging experts who analyze the true impact of the supply chain on a given package.

How should companies weigh performance, cost and sustainability initiatives? Is one more important than the others?

Companies should take a total cost view when evaluating materials, sustainability goals and performance by leveraging high quality predictive tools.  We often see that various operations within a company are functioning in silos with one group focused on cost reduction, another focused on reducing damage and another focused on sustainability objectives. A decision by one group can affect all the others and can also cause an increase in damage rates and non-saleables.

Material reduction savings are quickly lost when the material’s performance is sacrificed beyond what is required to get the products to the consumers in good condition.  Nothing is more costly than shipping a product twice.

In turn, sustainability gains from new packaging materials or packaging material reductions can be quickly lost if the packaging’s performance is reduced past what is required to get the products to the consumers.  Sustainability goals should encompass all inputs, including fuel costs, handling, etc., used to get a product to the consumer.

In order to truly optimize packaging performance, various business functions need to understand the cost implications across the full supply chain, which can be achieved through distribution testing.

 

Full article: http://www.foodengineeringmag.com/articles/96232-how-supply-chains-affect-packaging

Source: Food Engineering

Breaking down the value of compostable packaging

When a consumer tosses a product’s outer packaging into the trash, instead of recycling or composting it, the consumer may have a negative impression of the company. To improve a company’s environmental impact, while improving the consumer’s brand experience, companies are increasingly addressing the challenges around packaging and waste.

There are multiple paths to divert waste from going to landfills, such as reuse, recycling, composting, incineration or digestion with capabilities to capture energy. A company should consider several factors, including packaging functionality, available recovery infrastructure and value of the solution in determining a waste solution.

Here are some of the opportunities and challenges related specifically to composting:

Cost: The design stage is when a package will be designed to enable compostability through choices such as materials and thickness. Brands must be prepared to pay for this packaging attribute, though. Often compostable packaging incurs higher costs compared to a standard packaging. Added costs may come from materials, testing, additional resources or necessary certifications.

Performance: There may also be limitations on materials available that meet performance needs in a compostable material offering.

Infrastructure: The infrastructure for commercial composting in the U.S. is still in its infancy, but many stakeholders are interested in fostering its growth. One opportunity that could fuel these advancements is the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) goal to reduce food waste nationally by 50% by 2030 from the 2010 baseline. Composting is one means to reduce food waste. Thus, progress towards this goal could result in improvements in composting infrastructure resources, availability and viability.

However, where composting infrastructure exists, compostable packaging is not always accepted into the program. Thus, it is important for the industry to stay engaged to make the case for composters to accept compostable packaging.

We are yet to see what infrastructure for composting will look like in its mature form. Efforts for national brands to implement national programs will need to engage locally to be successful. The opportunity that brands have now is to establish themselves as progressive leaders in the industry with proactive behavior, taking initiative in composting and developing packaging that is conducive to the processes available.

Consumer engagement and collection: Helping consumers understand how to properly dispose of compostable packaging is key to realizing its value and potential.

However, the concept of composting and compostable packaging is a newer idea for many, and may not be as well understood as recycling. There are also legal requirements companies must navigate to ensure they do not unintentionally mislead consumers, as detailed in the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) Green Guides. GreenBlue’s Sustainable Packaging Coalition has developed a consumer-facing on-pack program called the How2Compost label, which aims to clearly, and simply communicate to consumers the appropriate action to take.

There has been successful deployment and collection of compostable packaging in specific localized instances, such as sports stadiums, institutional cafeterias and cities with local curbside collection programs that accept compostable packaging. For example, if the stadium requires all vendors to use only compostable packaging, it makes it easier for event attendees and staff to dispose of the packaging properly. Additionally, most of the packaging material will remain in the venue, so the facilities managers can capture a high volume of compostable material.

Read the full article:
http://www.packagingdigest.com/sustainable-packaging/breaking-down-the-value-of-compostable-packaging-2016-10-19

Source: Packaging Digest

Sustainable packaging requires yin and yang thinking

Sustainable Materials Management and The Circular Economy are two big picture catch phrases competing for the attention of the packaging industry. Do you know which is better for the environment and which is better for your bottom line?

Sustainable Materials Management (SMM) is a framework for minimizing the environmental impacts related to the consumption of products and services. It is based on the concept of lifecycle thinking, whereby the cradle-to-grave chain of inputs, throughputs and outputs of a specific product or service is measured, analyzed, compared and evaluated.

There are two primary aspects to SMM. The first relates to source reduction; the goal is to minimize the amount of materials and energy needed to deliver 100% of the value expected from purchased products and services.

After source reduction techniques are applied, the key to successful SMM implementation is to:

• Use only the most effective, efficient material and energy resources when creating products and services, and

• Keep those resources operating indefinitely within the economic system.

Doing so requires Circular Economy (CE) thinking, which minimizes disposability and waste while maximizing conservation, reuse and recovery.

When working within both SMM and CE frameworks, it is important to keep a couple of points in mind:

1. Looking at the “big picture” from a lifecycle perspective can produce counter-intuitive, but more effective, actions and results.

2. Because we haven’t yet invented a perpetual-motion machine, achieving SMM and CE is a journey, not a destination. Over time, innovation and its long-term effects can create the need to augment or modify strategies and tactics.

To read the full article, click here:
http://www.packagingdigest.com/sustainable-packaging/sustainable-packaging-requires-yin-yang-thinking1608

Source: Packaging Digest

The outlook for the green packaging market to 2020

Global Green Packaging Market 2016-2020, from Infiniti Research conducted a new study predicting the global green packaging market will experience growth at a CAGR of more than 7% during the forecasted period. With the consumer demand for eco-friendly and sustainable packaging material on the rise, vendors are focused on developing materials that have the traditional qualities but can also be recycled.

Europe leads the market with more than 31% in 2015; the rest of the world is well diversified as well. The leading countries in this region are Germany, United Kingdom and Italy.

According to the report, one of the major drivers of the market is the demand for bioplastics. Bioplastics are considered more sustainable than conventional plastic packaging products because they consume less energy and natural resources during the manufacturing process, generate lower CO2 emissions, and are lightweight by nature.

Click here to read the full article: http://www.packworld.com/sustainability/bioplastics/outlook-green-packaging-market-2020

Source: Packaging World

Package Sustainability Now an Expectation

Smithers Pira’s report, “Ten-year Forecast of Disruptive Technologies in Sustainable Packaging to 2026,” says, “Sustainability will become an increasingly important factor for decision makers at all stages of packaging value chains. Sustainability is now a fast-growing and vitally important area of concern for packaging and addresses economic, environmental and social objectives.”

“The trend toward sustainability is an important influence on the packaging industry. Consumers, manufacturers and retailers are all demanding more sustainable systems, which are formalized in corporate social responsibility goals and publicized in product marketing,” says Dr Terence A. Cooper, author of the report.

“Consequently, sustainability is no longer just nice to have, but is now seen as a necessity for attracting consumers and protecting market share – i.e. it is now an expectation, not a differentiator.”

Smithers Pira’s report makes the following points:

• Mechanical recycling and sustainability are not synonymous and many different factors contribute to the carbon footprints of different packaging types and materials.

• The most important rigid packaging plastic is PET, followed by polyethylene (PE); PET and PE combined account for about 65% of plastics used for rigid packaging. Polypropylene is next. In contrast, the most important plastic material used for flexible packaging is PE, followed by PP and PET.

• There is presently no package that is completely sustainable and the various packaging materials (including plastics, paper, paperboard, metals and glass) all have advantages and shortcomings depending upon the product application.

To read the entire article, click here: http://www.healthcarepackaging.com/sustainability/strategy/package-sustainability-now-expectation

Source: Healthcare Packaging

5 exciting, emerging sustainable packaging materials to watch in 2016

Every year technology advancements in the packaging industry become more innovative, widespread and tangible. These advancements are key contributors in propelling new safety and sustainability opportunities. Manufacturers and technology providers are working together to provide the most sustainable packaging solutions for end users. Here are some of the latest packaging materials to keep an eye on.

 

  1. Sustainable Aqueous Barrier Coatings

New sustainable coatings improve fiber products by preventing moisture from penetrating them material and possibly contaminating food. New sustainable coatings also present alternatives to laminated structures that cannot be recycled.

 

  1. Molded Fiber Printing

New technology enables high-res four-color graphics to be applied directly to the molded fiber packaging.

 

  1. Light Weight Insulation

There is a new lightweight, durable insulation material for cold and hot applications called Chill Buddy. The packaging material is temperature controlled and offers a sustainable substitute to expanded polystyrene foam.

 

  1. Micro-Fibrillated Cellulose Specialty Fiber

Micro-Fibrillated Cellulose is a fiber derived from plant waste. It is used to strengthen and lighten fiber products sustainably; resulting in reduced material with maintained performance,  improved crack resistance and a stronger fiber that is lighter weight.

 

  1. Micro-Pattern Material Enhancement

This new technology improves the grip, comfort and handling of hot beverages, while slowing down the condensation process.

 

 

Click this link to read the entire article:

http://www.packagingdigest.com/packaging-design/5-exciting-emerging-sustainable-packaging-materials-to-watch-in-2016-2016-02-24

 

Source: Packaging Digest

Packaging trends for 2016: Sustainability still rules

Sustainability is a trendy buzzword that has made its way from every day business verbiage to something which all companies, in any business, must focus on to survive in business today. Sustainability has evolved from LED light bulbs in the office and recycling bins under every desk to its incorporation company policy and values. The effects of a company on the environment are wide reaching; finding their way from the boardroom downwards and are strictly enforced in environmental policies. Balancing the demands of the consumer and the limited resources of the Earth is the key challenge companies are facing today. We live in a world of fast pace and convenience are both expected and the throw away nature of our products creates a problem, but a balance that must be struck and many companies are focusing their efforts on doing just that.

 

One of the biggest brands, Apple, is focusing on the sustainability of their product. They started with the weight of their package, between two iPhone generations they have decreased the weight of their carton by 34% less volume and the iPhone itself being 20% lighter than the first generation. Along with designing a lighter product and package, the company’s electricity is 93% sourced from renewable energy, with 23 countries boasting 100% renewable energy. Apple has also teamed up with WWF and The Conservation Fund to ensure sustainable forests in the United States are protected, and the forests in China that had previously been plundered are sustained and managed.

 

Despite these efforts, the United States is still behind when it comes to recycling. The US ranks far behind other developed countries with an average packaging recycling rate of about 51% (Natural Defense Council, 2015). However, many US companies are joining sustainable initiatives to ensure their product is a recyclable and/or sustainable product.

 

Source: Packaging News