Unilever Japan’s Lux Luminique Sachet Set Limited Design represents yet another data point in the trend toward mono-material flexible packaging. The sachet-style pack design using a more easily recyclable mono-material PET film is set to launch in Japan in April, 2021. The company chose this material, which comes from the GL Barrier range of films by Toppan Printing, after successfully collaborating with Toppan on quality tests.
With the problem of plastic waste receiving significant attention, demand for more eco-friendly packaging continues to increase, and companies around the world are taking measures focused on timeline targets for better circulation of plastic resources used for packaging and containers. Unilever has announced global commitments for a waste-free world, aiming to halve its use of virgin plastic, help collect and process more plastic than it sells, and ensure that 100% of plastic packaging is designed to be fully reusable, recyclable, or compostable. The major brand owner is transforming its approach to plastic packing through its “Less plastic. Better plastic. No plastic.” Framework, and making progress toward its sustainability targets around the world.
Conventional single-use plastic sachet packages combine a PET substrate with materials such as aluminum and polyethylene. Toppan’s mono-material packaging uses a PET-based grade of GL FILM, a vapor-deposited transparent barrier film from the GL BARRIER range, and combines it with PET sealant. The manufacturing method and material composition ensure strong oxygen and water vapor barrier performance, provide low adsorption to prevent loss of aroma and quality, and make it possible to prevent reduction of product weight during storage over long periods. The use of a single material improves recyclability, and the absence of aluminum film enables a reduction of roughly 25% in CO2 emissions during packaging manufacture.
“We’re delighted that Unilever Japan has chosen Toppan’s mono-material flexible packaging for these new products,” says Yoshimitsu Anamizu, Managing Executive Officer of Toppan’s Living & Industry Division. “We continue to work on developing more readily recyclable and eco-friendly solutions for diverse packaging contents and aim to contribute to the growth of our customers’ businesses and a sustainable society by expanding the TOPPAN S-VALUE™ [SUSTAINABLE-, SMART LIFE-, and SOCIAL-VALUE] Packaging range [this mono-material is a part of the SUSTAINABLE-VALUE range].”