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Caroline Babendererde is Head of Sustainability Mid Europe at Tetra Pak

“We must make packaging more attractive as a varied professional field”

21.02.2024

In a world forced to meet the global challenges of sustainable food systems, progressive packaging solutions are indispensable. This includes the people working on these solutions. In this interview with Caroline Babendererde, Head of Sustainability Mid Europe at Tetra Pak, we discuss how to win young talents for the industry and the role of sustainability initiatives.
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Caroline Babendererde is Head of Sustainability Mid Europe at Tetra Pak

“We must make packaging more attractive as a varied professional field”

21.02.2024

In a world forced to meet the global challenges of sustainable food systems, progressive packaging solutions are indispensable. This includes the people working on these solutions. In this interview with Caroline Babendererde, Head of Sustainability Mid Europe at Tetra Pak, we discuss how to win young talents for the industry and the role of sustainability initiatives.
Read more

Image: Sensoneo

Romania launches the world’s largest deposit system for beverages

14.02.2024

Right now, Romania has one of the lowest recycling rates for packaging in all of Europe. This is currently set to change. Recently, the country in south-eastern Europe introduced a deposit return system for single-use packaging for beverages – with almost 80,000 collection points it is to become the world’s largest so-called Deposit Return System (DRS).
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Several rolls of labels

Image: Securikett

Paper safety labels for recycling

14.02.2024

Products that are counterfeit or which have been tampered with cause large economic damage. Safety labels can help to guarantee the authenticity and integrity of goods, as when someone attempts to open the packaging, it leaves irreversible traces. When it comes to recyclability, however, these small labels are often not performing very well.
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Mia Pettersson

Image: Sonja Bähr, private

Networked packaging industry specialist

17.01.2024

Who is saying something, for what reason are they saying it, what is behind it and who does it benefit? Industrial engineer Sonja Bähr uses questions like these to encourage people to be more critical about statements regarding packaging, waste disposal and recycling.
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Woman behind a lectern

Image: dvi

“Impressed by the power of innovation”

14.12.2023

The German Packaging Institute brings all the different players in the packaging industry together – whether for an expert or political discussion or to celebrate innovations, for example at the German Packaging Award. Kim Cheng, a lawyer and since 2016 managing director of the dvi, combines legal competence with commitment to the needs of the packaging industry and its players.
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Children in front of full plates.

Image: SIG

Cartons for Good project wins SAVE FOOD competition

13.12.2023

1.3 billion tonnes of food are lost or wasted globally every year. With their project Cartons for Good, the SIG Foundation is using the SIG know-how to reduce theses losses. With a specially developed bottling station, the team supports communities in poorer countries to preserve food locally – and was able to win in the project competition by the SAVE FOOD Initiative.
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tray sample

Image: Juha Hakulinen, VTT Technical Research Center of Finland

VTT PILOTS CELLULOSE AS ALTERNATIVE TO RIGID POLYPROPYLENE PACKAGING

30.11.2023

Researchers at the VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland have developed formable, cellulose-based webs that they say offer a sustainable alternative to plastic in rigid polypropylene in food packaging applications.
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White and green plastic bags

Image:Unsplash

Egypt’s Innovative Solutions: Turning Plastic Waste into Recycling Opportunities

16.11.2023

The packaging industry is heavily reliant on plastics. However, as the focus shifts to more sustainable packaging options, global industry stakeholders and policymakers are searching for ways to investigate how plastic packaging waste can be used to explore sustainable industry practices and market opportunities, some of which might be real gamechangers.
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Glass of beer and paper bottle

Image: Carlsberg

Inside Paboco’s Quest for the Ideal Paper Bottle

15.11.2023

Tim Silbermann, Paboco’s new 33-year-old CEO, is on a mission to help the Alpla-owned company develop a 100 percent bio-based, fully recyclable bottle. It currently is supplying customers such as Procter & Gamble, L’Oréal, Coca-Cola Co., Carlsberg, and Absolut Vodka and continues to strive for a viable all-paper bottle.
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Mia Pettersson

Image: BASF

Women in packaging: Mia Pettersson – helping take compostable bioplastics to the next level

14.11.2023

BASF has been active in the bioplastics field for more than 30 years. Swedish chemical engineer Mia Pettersson is head of BASF’s biopolymer portfolio in Ludwigshafen, Germany, where she works on continuing to develop compostable and biodegradable plastics while supporting women in their advancement in the company.
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Three people in front of a poster

Image: RIGK

Agricultural bulk bags for a circular economy

14.11.2023

Whether it is seeds, fertilisers or animal feed, farms receive a large amount of items in bulk bags. But what to do with the empty plastic super sacks? The VerenA return scheme was launched in early 2023 specifically for the disposal of used, licensed bulk bags.
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Digitally watermarked yoghurt and kefir containers

Image: Aldi Süd Gruppe

Final testing stage for HolyGrail 2.0

14.11.2023

Digital watermarks could play a key role in the future when it comes to packaging recyclability. They are invisible to the human eye but carry a wealth of information. The HolyGrail 2.0 initiative aims to implement the technology for large-scale sorting of post-consumer waste, with plans for a test market in France in 2024. The final stage of testing has now begun.
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RFID label on a red plastic package

Bild: Checkpoint Systems

Keeping an eye on reusable containers

11.10.2023

Since the beginning of 2023, reusable containers are mandatory in restaurants. For the proprietors, it is often not easy to keep track of stock levels and the necessary order quantities for resupply. This is where RFID systems can be useful, as they help to record each single container quickly and without contact. McDonald’s France is already using this technology for its reusable packaging.
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printed stand-up bag front and back

Image: Siegwerk Druckfarben

How coloured foil bags become colourless granules

11.10.2023

Colourful plastic packaging sells well. However, the printing colour also prevents the packaging from being recycled in the form of transparent granules. Now there is a solution that completely removes printing colours and barrier coatings from foil bags. Afterwards, the packaging can be recycled to almost colourless granules.
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The compact På(fyll) containers stack neatly for both storage and transportation.

Image: Form Us With Love

Designing for Circular Consumer Goods Packaging

21.09.2023

Four Nordic companies partnered to create a new circular service for consumer packaged goods. Called På(fyll), it is an app-based subscription service for household products made by conglomerate Orkla. Honored recently by Fast Company, it uses specially designed reusable and recyclable HDPE containers and aims to reduce single-use packaging waste.
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Workers at BASF

Image: BASF

What are the environmental impacts of alternative raw materials?

12.09.2023

In mass balancing, chemically recycled or bio-based raw materials are input at the very beginning of plastics production and then computationally assigned to the end products. Using the example of flexible mozzarella packaging, a study investigated whether and how this procedure influences the life-cycle assessment of packaging produced from these raw materials.
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Two plastic bottles with transparent label

Image: Dow

How labels are becoming more recyclable

12.09.2023

A world without labels? Inconceivable. Their endless variety of materials, shapes and functions help labels attract attention. But it should also be possible to separate them from their packaging again at the end of the packaging’s life in the interests of a circular economy. Recyclable solutions are on the way.
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Takeaway drink with paper lid

Image: The Paper Lid Company

Paper lids for less single-use plastic

15.08.2023

When the time comes for a hot or cold drink while out and about, many people opt for takeaway beverages in disposable cups. These often come with a plastic lid, resulting in a significant volume of waste. One Finnish start-up is instead using recyclable paperboard lids and has entered into a partnership with Walki.
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An icon showing a person disposing of waste

Image: Gary Chan/unsplash

Labels with separation information on packaging help the circular economy

13.06.2023

Efficient and consistent recycling is one of the pillars of a functioning circular economy in the packaging industry. Such recycling includes the correct separation of packaging so that it can be fed into its respective recycling stream. A survey has now shown that information about separation can play a decisive role for consumers.
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A tattooed hand holds a plastic water bottle.

Image: Jonathan Cooper/unsplash

How useful are PET bottles?

16.05.2023

People need water. And it has to be brought to them somehow. That’s where packaging, e.g. PET bottles, is important – particularly in areas where the groundwater is polluted. A study commissioned by Lidl, the German discount supermarket, revealed that it’s quite possible for plastic bottles to be sustainable in the right conditions.
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An arm with a hand in a rubber glove is holding a spray bottle.

Bild: jeshoots/unsplash

Better recycled material as a result of fewer fragrances

16.05.2023

Not all recycled materials are the same. That is because the quality of recycled plastics plays an important role en route to a circular economy. The Fraunhofer Institute LBF has consequently developed a method that removes problematic fragrances from packaging for detergents that is being recycled.
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WorldStar Award trophy

Since 1970, the WorldStar Awards have been conferred every year. (Image: WPO

Industry innovations in the spotlight

18.04.2023

Since 1970, the World Packaging Organization has annually awarded the WorldStar Awards. With this prize, WPO honours the achievements of the companies and developers in the industry. In 2023, this highly sought-after prize will be awarded during interpack.
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A compass lying on a tree trunk.

interpack 2023 is ready to start. But is the industry ready? (Image: Jamentle Reskp/unsplash)

Everything in crisis? The packaging industry before interpack 2023

18.04.2023

Six years are a long time. All the more so for a dynamic industry like the packaging sector. But this is the amount of time that has passed since the last interpack. Which issues are being debated worldwide shortly before the start of the trade fair?
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Cold shipping with paperfloc eco systems

Impression of a trade fair hall at interpack

These topics will shape interpack 2023

18.04.2023

Circular economy, conserving resources, digital technologies and product safety – those are the four hot topics which will shape interpack 2023 more than any other issue. But what exactly are these focal points of interest all about?
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Cold shipping with paperfloc eco systems

The carbon neutral paperfloc eco systems keep temperature sensitive products cold and can be disposed of completely with the waste paper. (Image: easy2cool GmbH)

Green shipping package for temperature sensitive products

13.03.2023

When food, cosmetics or pharmaceutical products have to be shipped, they sometimes need constant cooling. Often, the solution is polystyrene. The Munich company easy2cool has developed a sustainable alternative. The paperfloc systems are fully recyclable.
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Biobased plastic wrap made from coffee grounds

As part of the WaysTUP! project, Aimplas has produced a plastic wrap from coffee grounds. (Image: Aimplas)

Plastic wrap from coffee grounds

14.02.2023

The project WaysTUP! is looking for new use options to maintain organic waste in circulation for longer and to use it as secondary raw materials. The Spanish centre for plastic technology Aimplas is using coffee grounds to make biobased polymers for flexible packaging.
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A bottle made of bioplastic stands on top of a moss covered tree stump.

Looks like PET, but is PEF bioplastic. (Image: Avantium)

Bioplastics in packaging

14.02.2023

There is a reason why the packaging industry has been focusing for decades on the many different applications for fossil plastics. Now, companies are increasingly focussing on biobased plastics. But what are the possible applications, and what needs to be considered during the changeover?
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Three EU flags

The European Green Deal is supposed to make Europe carbon neutral by 2050. (Image: unsplash/Alexandre Lallemand)

European Green Deal – ambitious concept for carbon neutrality in Europe

17.01.2023

The bundle of measures that makes up the Green Deal is supposed to make Europe the first carbon neutral continent. Circular economy is an important stepping stone on the way to achieving this goal. The EU Commission now has presented a suggestion for a packaging regulation which is supposed to create a new order for the European packaging market.
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Sausage in a recyclable film wrapping

The new film by allvac is suitable for wrapping foods and has a high degree of recyclability. (Image: allvac Folien GmbH)

Recyclable wrap for food packaging

16.01.2023

Film wrapping can achieve an appetising presentation of foods at the PoS. For composite films, their ability to be recycled is especially relevant. allvac has achieved confirmation from the cyclos-HTP institute that their new wrapping film is 100 percent recyclable.
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The words

Image: Kelly Sikkema/unsplash

Eventful times for the packaging industry

12.12.2022

Only few would have expected the direction in which the year 2022 will develop. A lot has also happened in the packaging industry. Not only has the conflict in Ukraine thrown the markets into turmoil, but new legislation is also presenting the industry with new challenges. But there are also good things to report.
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Plastic pallets by Cabka

The sustainable load carriers by Cabka were especially designed and improved for the chemical industry. (Image: Cabka)

The new generation of recycled plastic pallets

12.12.2022

For the chemical industry, plastic pallets could be a sustainable alternative when it comes to the transport and storage of products. With the help of industry feedback, Cabka has developed a sustainable generation of their plastic pallets, made from recycled material.
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BC Ecobulk SX-D being emptied

When emptying the Ecobulk SX-D, the discharge pipe reaches down to the bottom and achieves near complete emptying. (Image: Schütz)

Safe protection under difficult conditions

12.12.2022

The safe transport of hazardous goods or chemicals depends on reliable containers. But sustainability should not be overlooked. The German company Schütz produces different IBC containers which are manufactured using recycled material.
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A delivery van showing many different parcels with different labels stacked inside.

The number of online orders and delivered packages is growing every year, all over the world. (Image: Claudio Schwarz / Unsplash)

Packaging in the times of e-commerce

17.11.2022

Today, even your grocery shopping is delivered by mail. The changes to the way we live our everyday lives, brought about by the lasting e-commerce trend, also mean that packaging is not what it used to be. Even something as seemingly simple as a shipping box comes with a lot of things that need to be taken into consideration and improved.
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A person applying a hazard label to an uneven surface

Boxlab Services takes care that hazard labels comply with legal requirements. (Image: Boxlab Services)

Small print runs of labels for hazardous materials

17.11.2022

Transport of hazardous materials poses different challenges to labels. They have to adhere to different materials and be resistant to chemicals or environmental effects. Storage and disposal of large amounts of labels can become a problem.
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Extrusion system PowerCast XL by SML

The PowerCast XL is a high performance system for the manufacture of stretch films (Image: SML)

PCR in film production

17.11.2022

Mechanical engineering company SML and plastics producer Braskem have entered a cooperation and are now using recycled raw materials to produce film for a joint project. The use of PCR (post-consumer recyclates) is supposed to save resources and reduce waste.
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Fog rising from a pine forest.

Bio-based adhesives may for example be produced from pine resin. (Image: Michele Purin/unsplash)

Glue goes green

17.11.2022

Quite often, consumers only take notice of it when it doesn’t work: glue. But as invisible as this little helper of packaging might be, so important is paying attention to its carbon balance, too. Improvements can be made, for example by using bio-based adhesives.
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Paper cups for to-go beverages such as coffee.

When it comes to their daily coffee, many people choose the to-go option and quickly dispose of the cups afterwards. Stora Enso and Huhtamaki now want to recycle these cups. (Image: Stora Enso)

A coalition for more and better cup recycling

24.10.2022

For 2030, the EU recycling target for paper and cardboard packaging is 85 %. However, the valuable raw materials in paper cups are often lost after only a short period of use. With The Cup Collective, Stora Enso and Huhtamaki are launching an initiative to collect and recycle paper cups.
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A blue rubbish bin with a white recycling symbol

The use of recyclates begins with the correct separation of waste. (Image: Sigmund/unsplash)

Use of recyclates in packaging

24.10.2022

If there is one thing the industry agrees on, it is that more recycled raw materials must be used. In the case of plastics, this means recyclates. They are in greater demand than ever, but the supply is still relatively small. What do packaging manufacturers have to pay attention to when using them, and what has to change so that more recyclates can be used?
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The washing and racking system from KHS

The Innokeg AF-C Transversal can wash and rack returnable and one-way kegs on just one system. (Image: KHS Group)

500 kegs per hour on one conveyor belt

24.09.2022

In the early days, a keg tap was simply driven into the wooden keg with a hammer, but today modern returnable kegs are connected to tap systems. However, after use, they need to be washed and then refilled, or racked. KHS, a Dortmund-based machine manufacturer, has now developed a system that can wash and rack different types of kegs using a single conveyor belt.
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Close-up of the recycling symbol for polypropylene.

Many companies are switching their packaging to mono-materials like polypropylene. But what are their advantages and disadvantages? (Picture: Shutterstock/ CalypsoArt)

Mono-material, a ray of hope

17.08.2022

The industry is in pursuit of the circular economy. That is why, in the packaging industry, companies are increasingly switching to mono-materials. But what exactly does that term mean, and why are these packaging materials becoming ever more popular?
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Bundles of empty beverage cartons

Used beverage cartons on the way to the recycling plant. Photo: FKN

Benelux to recycle beverage cartons

17.08.2022

Beverage cartons are not waste, they consist of valuable raw materials that can be recycled. Stora Enso and Tetra Pak want to build a complete recycling system for the composite cartons in Belgium and are currently assessing the project’s feasibility.
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Cart buyer in supermarket

Image: AdobeStock

Sausage wrap that can be recycled

21.07.2022

Sliced sausage is supposed to look good on the refrigerator shelves in the supermarket and is usually wrapped in non-recyclable transparent composite film. Now, thanks to energy-efficient heating systems in thermoforming machines for packaging, it is possible to use more sustainable materials – while maintaining the same level of safety, quality and transparency.
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Container for Aino ice cream against a woodland backdrop

Image: Froneri Finland Oy

Ice cream packaged in mono-material

21.07.2022

Companies continue to ask themselves how they can meet customers' demands for sustainable packaging. Together, Borealis, Froneri and Paccor have found an answer, and are packaging ice cream from the brand Aino in mono-material.
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Three garbage bins next to each other and one garbage sack for different kinds of waste.

Image: "Mülltrennung wirkt" (waste separation works) initiative / Steffen Jagenburg

Public obligations for recycling: Germany – a good role model?

14.07.2022

In 2019, the Central Agency Packaging Register started its work. Since then, companies that place packaging in circulation must register with it. An amendment to the German Packaging Act led to this requirement being extended to all online retailers and providers of take-away packaging on July 1st, 2022. Is this still reasonable or is this over-regulation?
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Several small single-use bags

Photo: Kier In Sight / unsplash

Mono-material sachets

21.06.2022

For packaging made of plastic, their potential to be recycled is very important. Refilling systems save material. Mono-material sachets and bags also reduce the amount of material consumed, protect packaged goods and have practical uses for customers.
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A range of glass bottles filled with various recyclates.

Image: Fraunhofer IVV

Rebound Plastic Exchange: New trading platform for recyclates

25.05.2022

Circular economy can only truly work if plastic waste is collected, recycled and reused. To drive international trade with recycled plastic, Abu Dhabi-based International Holding Company (IHC) has now established a new trading platform for recyclates with Rebound Plastic Exchange.
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A reusable glass bottle upright on the beach. Next to it lies a plastic bottle that is damaged in some places.

Image: Sea Me

Deposit systems for cosmetics packaging?

24.05.2022

On the beverage sector, deposit systems have been around for many years. Now, deposit systems are being introduced specifically for cosmetics packaging as well. A pilot project by Circleback is currently underway in Berlin, while Sea Me has introduced a reusable solution for cosmetics packaging with zerooo.
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