Clariant is introducing new additives and products to enhance the appearance of packaging, reduce material use and bottle weight, and expand the use of liquid color and additive concentrates.
“PET packaging was a major emphasis for Clariant at Luxe Pack,” explains Peter Prusak, Head of Marketing, Clariant Masterbatches North America. “The clarity and colorability of this polymer make it ideal for high-end products and recent developments now make it possible to incorporate relatively high percentages of recycled material without compromising on appearance. That’s really important for brand owners with aggressive sustainability objectives.”
Clariant recently announced the introduction of a new optical brightening additive masterbatch that minimizes yellowing and graying of PET (polyester terephthalate) polymers caused by the introduction of post-consumer-recycled resin (PCR). Even a small quantity of the additive can make material with up to 25% recycled content visibly brighter. The additive has received approval for food contact applications from the U.S. Food & Drug Administration and similar regulations in the European Union. Prusak says the new masterbatches “open new opportunities for more sustainable packaging.”
Another route to sustainability can be seen in Hydrocerol chemical foaming additives, which deliver double-digit reductions in material consumption and weight without significant loss of appearance or mechanical properties. New chemistries are being refined for use in multiple applications including polyethylene and polypropylene bottles or in polystyrene or PLA sheet for formed packaging.
To offer designers and marketers new options for luxurious and colorful packaging, Clariant has introduced a new range of pearl effect pigments based on synthetic mica-like materials. These new looks are being displayed in PET bottles with complementary PP caps. “People are beginning to take notice of the very rich beauty this new series of pearls can create,” Prusak says. “We believe they offer a really attractive alternative to painting when it comes to decorating plastic containers for the luxury market.”
In fact, the new effects are featured in four out of the twenty colors presented in the ColorForward 2017 trend-analysis and color design tool, which was also featured at Luxe Pack. This is 11th annual edition of Clariant’s color forecasting guide for plastics. The 2017 guide visualizes trends like data mining, growing social disconnection and the search for more meaningful lives. Each of the trend themes is represented by a palette of five colors to inspire designers of plastics packaging and stimulate creative thought.
Finally, for packaging developers and converters who prefer color and additive concentrates in liquid form, Clariant is focusing attention on HiFormer. This unique program seeks to help customers find the perfect mix of creative ideas, materials, and production technology for their plastic packaging design. Bringing together chemistry, engineering, and consultancy, this holistic system ensures top performance, flexibility, and excellence for any product idea.