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Switching to Paper or Recycled Blister Packaging Without New Machines

Two companies have debuted packaging systems with sustainability features that don’t require the investment in new machinery.

Paper Blister Pack

While many companies are striving to meet packaging sustainability goals, the prospect of purchasing new machinery can be a deterrent for some.

Two companies recently debuted recyclable packaging that doesn’t require an investment in new machinery to implement at WestPack in Anaheim.

 Paper blister

Paper blisters have existed for some time, but the Alloyd Division of Sonoco launched its EnviroSense™ PaperBlister™, an all-paper retail blister package designed as an alternative to traditional thermoformed plastic blister packages.

 With advanced new tooling, manufacturers can run the blister package on existing Alloyd equipment—including the Aergo 8 blister machine—without sacrificing speed. Changeover can be completed by one person in under 20 minutes.

“Many companies are moving from PVC to RPET—this is a leap forward to a recyclable monomaterial ready for the paper stream,” says Kim Sanderson, Marketing Specialist at Sonoco Alloyd. This offers a blister alternative for brands seeking to reduce plastic by 2025.

The Sonoco all-paper blister can package anything from batteries to personal care and beauty, and employs a water-based sealing technology. For those seeking product visibility afforded by traditional blisters, cutouts are an option while the full paper blister offers additional real estate for branding and graphics. The blister can be customized to form shapes beyond the traditional rectangle.

 “When evaluating and comparing against traditional blister packaging, the new structure will have a significant impact in the areas of ease of recyclability, shelf appeal and adoption into plastic-free selling streams being required in the near future” explains Sanderson.

 For video, check out: Sonoco Alloyd's EnviroSense(TM) PaperBlister(TM).

 Recycled blister packaging

Rohrer launched ecoCombo™, a Rohrer blister package that uses 50% post consumer recycled (PCR) content in its thermoformed blisters and a minimum of 65% PCR content in the blister boards. The system is reported to be the industry's first PCR materials combo.Eco Combo 1b 768x838

The company set out to make the packaging as efficient to implement as possible. “The marketplace is hungry for greener and sustainable materials. You can order the two components as a convenient package, and this new packaging can fit into customers’ production lines with existing heat-seal equipment and tooling,” says Michael Schaefer, Regional Sales Manager.

Designed for a myriad of applications from hardware to personal care, the post consumer material package features 20-pt SBS board,12- and 15-mil PCR PET and aqueous heat-seal coating. Internal print, thermoforming and seal testing has been completed, and third party testing is ongoing for aging, fiber tear and extreme temperatures.

The offering is part of the company’s ezCombo™, their design and manufacturing process that allows the production of multiple parts within the same production. It’s a shared tooling arrangement where companies only pay for the space they use in a run.

While sustainable packaging often comes at an increased price point, the ecoCombo packaging is in line with the existing ezCombo pricing structure, says Schaefer, adding that some major retailers have expressed interest in the opportunity to reduce waste.

As part of Rohrer’s commitment to providing sustainable solutions in packaging through responsible manufacturing and innovation, the company has partnered with, an organization that helps with reforestation efforts in areas affected by wildfires and over development, to plant a tree for every ecoCombo order. The packaging will be available in Apr. 2020, coinciding with Earth Day.


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