In my first article about the “The Best In Flexible Packaging” I criticised an article smoothing over the un-recyclability of multi-layer flexible pouches, published in Packaging Digest.
Let’s be crystal clear: Flexible pouches are a beautiful packaging format, but the companies using this packaging format to propagate their ethical and sustainability values are grossly misleading the consumer.
By selling single-use food and beverage packaging that ends up on a landfill, littering streets and waterways, or the oceans instead of being recycled, they’re not just wasting, they’re contributing to global pollution. That’s according to a new report, “Waste and Opportunity 2015”, from As You Sow and the Natural Resources Defense Council.
The report notes that “As a whole, all business sectors continue to drag their feet, failing to take sufficient responsibility for the packaging they generate”.
The conclusion, of course, is simple. It’s time for the flexible packaging industry to seriously start the implementation of proper recycling facilities for the packaging format they dump on the market.
Is there somebody who can tell me why the manufacturers of glass bottles and jars, PET bottles, beverage cartons, alu and steel beverage cans, corrugated and solid paperboard packaging, are in one way or another engaged in recycling processes and activities related to the respective products they sell in the market, and not one flexible packaging industry?
Awaiting their activity, we take a look at some more FPA awarded flexible packaging, as continuation of my previous article.
Liqui-Box created the Aseptic Flip-N-Seal fitment, a re-sealable dispensing system. The Aseptic Flip-N-Seal supplies customers a dispensing solution that is safe and sanitary and allows connection without removing a cap and exposing the product inside. The Aseptic Flip-N-Seal is the latest edition to Liqui-Box’s entire Flip-N-Seal family of fitments.
Adaptable to virtually all filling and dispensing systems for bag-in-box packaging, the Flip-N-Seal allows Liqui-Box customers to get connected with no hassle and no mess while maximizing the performance and value of the package. Flip-N-Seal is perfect for “Clean Fill”, “Extended Shelf Life (ESL)” or “Aseptic” applications.
This Aseptic Flip-N-Seal family can be used with any Liqui-Box films and allows Liqui-Box to deliver the product protection characteristics for any application.
Steam Rice Single-Serve Pouch
Berry Plastics Corporation is the creator of the new P.F. Chang’s Menu Steam Rice Single-Serve Pouch, a newly launched microwave-in-the-bag seasoned rice side-dish from ConAgra Foods.
The package utilizes Berry Plastics’ Steam Quick technology. For the Steam Quick flexible package the laminate incorporates a coextruded sealant web that is robust in both heat and frozen environments.
Additionally, a hermetic perforation is applied using laser technology, providing a high degree of consistency and performance while steam cooking the contents.
To ensure proper cooking of the food product in the microwave, and to prevent the food packaging from bursting, freezable, microwaveable pouches require the inclusion of a vent to release heat and/or steam that may be generated while cooking or heating the food product in the microwave.
Therefore the sealing film of the Chang Single-Serve Pouch is comprised of a microwavable film with a vent pattern, scored by a laser into a portion of the outer surface of the sealing film to form a weakened wall pattern. The vent pattern is scored in the sealing film at a depth that does not perforate the sealing film. Further, the inner surface adjacent to the weakened wall pattern is directly exposed to pressure generated in the inner region.
Microwaveable Pouch with Slider
For the German supermarket chain Reichelt in Berlin, Flex America Inc., created a flat-bottom stand-up pouch with a recloseable slider zipper and a special handle to carry it. The pouch is made from a BOPET/CPP film laminate that is made from polymers specially formulated to withstand microwave heating and cooking.
The European supermarket chain uses the stand-up pouch as a take-away packaging for marinated chicken. The buyer has the chicken packed in the pouch at the supermarket counter, takes it home and cooks it directly in a microwave oven without handling the product.
The pouch enables cooking without fogging and the slider is made from a special grade of ovenable PP resin.
Darfresh On Tray
The Cryovac division of Sealed Air Corporation developed the Darfresh On Tray, a vacuum skin packaging system that allows for optimization of operational efficiency, extended shelf life, consumer convenience, and food security improvement.
The leak proof clear tray and lid ensure visual appeal by the film’s ability to wrap gently yet firmly around all contours without any risk of distortion. The possibility of in-pack maturation is an added advantage for fresh meats. The pre-made tray and Darfresh skin top web are heat-sealed together right up to the product’s edges to facilitate a secure pack, affording excellent hygiene and a long shelf life for chilled and frozen proteins.
The company claims that this package offers benefits to the processor via film reduction of up to 40% with no material scrap, unequalled merchandising opportunities to the retailer using vertical display capability, and provides a freezer ready protective package that offers easy to open convenience to the consumer.
Side Seal Bag With Reclose
Sonoco Flexible Packaging created for Dare Foods Limited in Canada a side seal bag with reclose for its Boulangerie Grissol Artisanal Baguettes.
This product category is generally dominated by waxed paper pouches in paperboard boxes. With this flexible stand-up pouch Dare Foods Boulangerie Grissol Artisanal Baguettes side seal bag presents an eye-catching packaging with its brilliant graphics, including the rich, premium black background and the beautiful shots of the product.
The new packaging uses less material than the pouch-in-box format, while the barrier film structure keeps the products fresh.
High Performance Dairy Pouch Film
Another development from Liqui-Box, in this case for the Mexican dairy Lala and Gilsa. This coextruded film is used in a vertical-form-fill-seal filler to make pouches from 4 oz to 2 litres in size.
The smaller (Mini-Sip) pouches are used to package flavoured water, fruit juice and milk for nationwide school programs and retail applications in North and South America. The larger pouches are used to package milk for retail sale.
Testing and real life production data show that this new and improved dairy pouch delivers dramatic performance benefits.
Laser Code Engraving System
Flex America Inc. created for Nestlé’s Maggi brand in India a 3-layer flexible laminate structure that incorporates a covert alphanumeric code engraved on the sealant side (inside of the pouch) using a patented Laser Engraving system.
The code is not visible or readable from the outside of the printed package and can be accessed only by opening the pouch and dispensing the contents. The Laser Engraving system is patented by Uflex and can be used on either a single ply film or multi-ply laminate structures. It has been developed for LDPE, BOPET and BOPP substrates. The system can also engrave variable data on every repeat of the print design (package).
To be honest I don’t understand the significance and/or benefit of a covert code inside the pouch, which can only be seen when the content is dispensed. For a check of authenticity it’s useless for the consumer and what is the consumer supposed to do when he (if he) checks the code and can’t find it. He has the product dispensed and probably used already.
Is there somebody who can explain this to me?
Peanut Butter Fitment Pouch
In a previous article I wrote about an Australian design for a squeezable packaging for bread spread. Now we see a stand-up pouch for peanut butter. The stand-up pouch is manufactured by CL&D Graphics for Yumbutter.
The fitment was specifically chosen to allow the perfect amount of nut butter to be squeezed from the package. No longer restricted by a jar and the necessity of a knife, the consumer can now enjoy the product on the go. In addition, less residual product is left in the packaging.
That was my selection of the FPA Awards 2015. The development of flexible packaging is unstoppable, so let’s hope the industry finally gets its bearings together and gives trueheartedly its social responsibility some meaning.