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Live at interpack: Fiber-based Materials and Automation Advance

Whether in the form of rigid paperboard for beverage multipacks with automated applicators, or flexible paper barrier films in flow-wrapping or pouching operations, highly recyclable fiber-based packaging is on the rise in the name of sustainability.


Hi, I'm Matt Reynolds editor of Packaging World magazine back from Dusseldorf, Germany at interpack.

After a couple of days of clients concentrating on mostly automation controls and big, big pieces of equipment, entire packaging lines, I shifted gears to the material side of things. And when you're talking about materials, oftentimes you're talking about sustainability. So one trend we've been following in the United States, right is that rightly and wrongly, for multi packing a lot of brands have been shifting when they're able to do so shifting from plastic shrink wraps and trash and plastic multipacks to cardboard or to paperboard or oftentimes or even the canned carriers on six packs or 12 packs of bottles or PET bottles or, or cans of beverage, they've been moving to containerboard. So we saw quite a bit of that on the floor today by the usual suspects, we saw KHS, Krones, and Westrock. So let's give them look. Kgs is here at interpack presenting what it describes as a resource conserving system to promote the circular economy. K HS is no pac kissters Nature multipack machine, which the company says saves up to 90% of materials is on display with new features like a new universal adhesive. This adhesive is applicable to practically all outer coatings on both aluminum and tin or steel cans. This one fits all system makes it easier for beverage producers to convert to this machine technology since previously choosing the right adhesive could be a laborious process. Company also says the nature multiplex system is one of the most sustainable types of secondary packaging on the market as it clusters cans or PE tea bottles together to form stable packs with just a few dots of adhesive without any additional outer packaging. One other noteworthy offering kh s says it's able to help brands and CPGs on their packaging material and multi packing decision making processes. Thanks to new independent calculator tools that assess the carbon footprints of various packaging styles in direct comparison, just down the aisle and Hall 13 krones is demonstrating a similar set of offerings for the beverage market. Meanwhile, in Holly West Rock is taking square aim at the paperboard produce packaging market, which is booming, especially in France due to recent legislation. Let's hear directly from both of them krones in West crack,

okay, I'm Stefan with the Crohn's he we are a main supplier for the beverage industry filling capping processing, and specifically based in the packaging department down in South Bavaria. And we brought here an alternative for shrink conventional shrink firm. So presenting the light pick cloth family, either prochains for p p, and or for glass containers. To drink Tech, we already presented the light pack top family for cans, so a flat standard top clip, then the second version is with the promo skirt for advertisement or code hiding. And or the third variant is with the lip protection. So for the interpack. This year, we introduce the PDF version into the market, right, there's the first machine sold to a European customer. This comes with a flat top clip and a paper base strap. Main approach here at first is to save co2 content in comparison to plastics, right. second approach is then to use as less minimum as less material as possible. Right. And the third approach was to respect the installed machine base. So develop not a huge new machine, just use existing proven functions and develop them further, so that we can replace step by step plastics by a paper based packaging.
Hi, my name is Paul Chappell. I'm Sales Manager for the automation division of Westropp. I'm here to interpack 2023. And we're delighted to show you our Flexform and harvest range of products. So here we have our harvest plastic replacement range. What we're using here is instead of the plastic punnets, for tomatoes, strawberries, all of your fresh produce, we're using a fully fiber based solution. We supply the material as well as the automation to make sure that we have absolute perfectly optimized solution for you. And our aim really is to remove plastics from the market. Now we understand sometimes that the lid itself may need to be plastic. But in that case, we can always use a monomer or a biodegradable, fully recyclable kind of film. So the idea is totally separable into the waste stream. So we have many different designs. One of our big advantages here is the fact that the products are also we aim for backwards compatibility with the with the plastic equivalents, so the customer hasn't minimal changes on their machinery we're trying to avoid large changeover times expensive tooling etc. So that's really our big place and the fact that we can do the material and the machine together means that we can do all kinds of various options to suit lighter customers. Okay, hi, this is our Flexform Ranger machinery. And we're running our ever grow cotton based PUT IT solution here today. So this is a double head version. So we have two cavities, vertical magazine waist level, very easy access, very, very high accuracy and fast changeover. And we're running with a flange today. So this is a fully flange top saleable unit. And we have the optional stacker on the outfeed as well. So we can run it in individual cart and out the machine or we can run full stacks out. And then what happens there is that the customer takes it to the top sealing machine. And because of the work we've done on the carton design, you get a very, very stable, repeatable Punnett, which goes with incredible accuracy and efficiency through the top ceiling as well with minimal changes.
At the Sunoco booth, I saw an application from European breakfast foods provider one day more. Sunoco has been providing metal and containers to one day more since 2016. But even though their packaging met performance goals, consumer recycling didn't meet the mark. In 2020, the Federation of European paper industries reported at 74% with paper recycling rate that's close to the practical maximum recycling rate of 78%. It shows papers much more likely to wind up in recycling bins. Appealing to consumer perception, Sunoco delivered a new paper bottom and viral can despite fluctuating production plans. The new packaging product made from 100% recycled fibers is now in 13. European markets served by one day more. Dell magnanimously used much of its booth space and interpack to showcase winners of its popular Tao packaging Innovation Awards. One award winner that really caught my eye was from Procter and Gamble. The new p&g eco click box is a patent pending paperboard package, made with FSC certified materials and a minimum of 70% recycled fibers, packs fully recyclable and curbside paper collection streams. Its dimension design allow for 50% more packs per pallet and reduces the number of trucks within png facilities. Most importantly, it's a certified child safe system keeping kids away from laundry pods that admittedly do look a little bit appetizing. PNG says this is the first packaging solution for its laundry capsule products that really clicks all the boxes. Get it now not to be outdone, Unilever's personal had a similar launch, this time using board from graphic packaging International. Let's hear from Raul fit GPI about the project.
Good afternoon, on this beautiful Saturday during interpack got the honor to introduce you to one of our plastic replacement projects, not only projects who are successful market entries, this is a detergent pack, where the customer came to us a couple of couple of years ago it is right now with a task to replace a rigid plastic container, which of course you can use a scalpel. But um, initially said, well, we'll replace it. But we need functionality like a barrier into it. Okay, we need to stack a very high, okay. And we need to have a child safe. Because we don't want little toddlers or little kids to take these beautiful things in their hand or even worse in their mouth and swallow it. So needs to be very safe. And not only for first opening, you need to open it a couple of times, and not only a couple of times, up to 50 times. So with all these requirements, with all these challenges, we actually started developing, and we came up with a beautiful little concept, which consists out of two coupled components a lead and tray. And inside you see the capsules. And what looks like a magic trick, you know, was well rehearsed because I'm an adult. So I can open this pack, which little toddlers can and shouldn't. And I can open it once. By pressing here, I ran over twice and again and again. So if you look at it, it looks quite simple. But um, the devil is in the detail as we say Europe, and here, the devil, it killed it by using quite unique folding processes on the tray and on the hood. So with this, we are compensating tolerances in the filling process. And making sure this clicks on every time talking about compression strengths, what you see, we have two materials that add to each other and making it very stable when you stack these things. Barriers. You don't have any plastic films in there. There's no plastic, we just added a coating on the inside, which helps us to prevent any leakage if one of these little things is being pushed too hard. So there is no washing liquid coming out of the box. And additionally is a special coating that we applied in our printing press. We give it a moisture barrier so it stays nice and neat and does the job needs to do it It runs on automatic lines at high speed at the customer. These lines are coming from from a third party. We've done the factory acceptance test very successful, they run very smooth, very good. And when hitting the market, consumer feedback was fantastic. So the French and then the English consumers are happy new European markets coming soon. And of course, you're looking overseas to get this into market over there as
well. Another area where we're seeing fiber based packaging encroaching on what was traditionally the realm of plastic packaging is in films or flexible packaging. Here a few more examples that we saw on the floor today. At the top and booth from their recent acquisition inner flex group in the UK, you saw a range of fiber based films and flexible materials with paper bearing. We didn't get a whole lot of details here. I was running from one booth to the next but I do know that there are both heat seal and cold seal options, as well as big vegetable wax paper options. Here we see a paper flow wrapped cookie tray application. And finally, the color paper booth over in Hall eight I saw a pair of paper film applications versus a paper barrier application for the chocolate brand new cow color says it's flexible packaging paper next plus advanced has an excellent oxygen mineral oil and grease barrier which is necessary for applications where there's direct contact with chocolate and nuts. I again asked about the barrier but MIT for many of these paper film suppliers that's the secret sauce that's company IP. The best I managed by way of an explanation was at the barrier was likely mineral base. The company also revealed of non food sector collaboration with Schneider Electric using the Kohler next plus you'll pure materials and damages of 3540 4565 or 80 grams per square meter. This was an extremely tear resistance sturdy pack. It also is heat sealable and its strength properties make it well suited for the processing and most commercially available packaging machines. In fact, both new cow and Schneider use these paper films that to run on their existing packaging equipment with only minor equipment adjustments like ceiling temperatures and ceiling times. Now as you can see, I'm on a middle based high platform and a storm is rolling in. So I'm gonna go find safety. We'll talk to you next time

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