Inma Gonzalvo / 25 February 2016

Transparent plastic cans, flexible bags to package wine and oxygen absorbers, the latest innovations in food packaging

Some important innovations showed during the first day: new bio-resin materials, new multifunctional coatings with lower thickness, or optimizing barrier packages in order to increase the food shelf-life in supermarkets.

Valencia, 25th Feb 2015. A transparent plastic can for canned food, oxygen absorbers that increase the food shelf-life and bags to pack wine or oil are some of the innovations that have been lunched today in the first day of MeetingPack2015, the most important international event related to food plastic packaging, that takes place the 25th and 26th of February in Valencia.

– Canned food packaged in plastic cans

During the day, the English company Kortec has launched a transparent plastic can that can be used for packaging food that used to be packaged in metallic cans. They permit to keep the food shelf-life up to five years.

– Oxygen absorbing technologies in order to reduce the food waste

In Europe 209lb of food are wasted per person per year, five times more than in Japan. One option for increasing the shelf-life of sensible-to-oxygen-action packaged food is through the incorporation of oxygen scavengers, as Mitsubishi has done, capable to remove the remaining oxygen from inside the packages, in order to avoid the oxidation reactions that damage food and increase the shelf-life in a healthier way. The oxygen scavengers can be included as extern agents to the package, as labels or little bags inside.

This kind of technology is really used in Japan because of its oxidation prevention qualities, changes of food colour, but it is not so extended in Europe. One of the advantages of oxygen scavengers is that they do not need additional industrial equipment to use these technologies. It also prevents the oxidation of oils and fat, so a better preservation of the nutritional qualities of the food is obtained.

– Oxygen scavengers inside the packaging material

Another proposal that has been launched in the sector of oxygen scavengers, concretely for active packaging, is Shelfplus O2 by Albis Ibérica. In this case, the oxygen scavenger substance is included in the material used for manufacturing the packages. In other words, it does not appear as an external element in the package.

– Flexible and more resistant wine bottles

UBE Engineering Plastics has explained the latest technology in plastic packaging films. They have developed a new material with better properties of resistance, elasticity, versatility and durability that improves flexible food packaging and that has new uses, such as, for instance, the bottling of wine in flexible bottles.

– New high barrier polymeric materials

The Japanese company Nippon Gohsei has launched compostable and conventional ultra high oxygen barrier resins (EVOH) to its application in modified atmosphere packaging. EVOH is the plastic material with higher oxygen barrier and it is used in packaging applications where it is required that the oxygen  not enter (or leave) to the packaging. It can be used in multiple formats, such as trays, bottles, bags, cups, bricks for meat, fish, pasta or coffee. Besides, this multifunctional packaging has a high biodegradability and it makes easier the recycling because it is being done with bio-resins.

– Barrier coatings for packaging

SunChemical has launched some different coatings (SunBarCO2) for food packaging which are made with barrier materials that prevent the penetration or lose of gases (oxygen and water vapour), light, aromas and oudors that can damage the packaged food.

These components, among other advantages, offer a lower packaging thickness, higher transparency, improve the recycling capacity, protection against UVA and reduction of the energy consume.

– New developments in polyolefin for food packaging

Repsol is working in a large variety of plastics tailor-made for the consumers and with a range of properties that permit multiple uses. Among their main characteristics: the flexibility, mechanic resistance, low weight, stability, higher impermeability to humidity and, in some cases, they permit the sterilization.

The aim is obtaining better packaging with lower thickness without changing the final packaging properties. One of the latest Repsol’s innovations has been the development of a new material that permits a reduction of 30% of the film thickness with resistance levels similar to the current ones that can be used when manufacturing all kinds of food packaging.

– EVOH improved flexibility for new applications

EVAL has also launched new developments of EVOH (oxygen barrier plastic material par excellence) with an improved flexibility and its applications to bag-in-box packaging for oil or juice.

-Innovative replacement of aluminium foil

The aluminium foils have been used for years as a barrier material in the industry of flexible packaging to protect food of oxidation processes, humidity and light.

Metallized BOPP films or metallized PET films are an alternative for foods that are less sensible to external aggression. In TORAY FILMS presentation, the process that permits obtaining more flexible and resistant metallized films with an important reduction of the carbon footprint have been shown.

More sustainable canned packaging

EDV Packaging is obtaining important results in optimizing barrier packaging, especially in EVOH and the use of foamed materials and their application in children food, precooked food and pickles. This technology could be extended to increase the shelf-life in all kind of packaged food.

– Technology for transforming polymeric materials

The proposal of Macro Engineering company has been a new technology for individual foamed of co-extruded layers. It is a technology for transforming plastic material, useful to any product which it is wanted to reduce the weight of its packaging (meat trays, precooked dishes…).

– Preventing waste generation, the more sustainable option.

The European flexible packaging manufacturers’ employers has explained that avoiding the generation of wastes is the best bet in order to obtain an efficient management of resources, above recycling. As an example of innovation of waste management, BASF has launched their commercial results of its material Ecovio as compostable and biodegradable capsules for coffee, what permits their disposal together with organic wastes.


International meeting point

Tomorrow Thursday, 26th of February, will be explained, among others, the innovations obtained by ISBM, EBM and injection technologies; the latest trends in packaging solutions; the advancements in test equipments for measuring barrier properties in packaging and the reduction of food waste through packaging.

The second edition MeetinPack 2015, organized by AINIA and AIMPLAS, has a main objective to be an international meeting point for professionals of food, plastic and packaging sectors and to offer global solutions to plastic, packaging and related industries; a cooperation that generates a great technological potential and is a top level European reference in food plastic packaging. It is meeting, in two days, more than 300 experts.

In the context of MeetingPack, AIMPLAS and AINIA will show some keys about how dealing with the manufacturing of active packaging and solutions through the packaging technologies to the food waste, both points that become great challenges to packaging manufacturers and end-users.

MeetingPack 2015 is sponsored by two companies: Sealed Air and Albis. It has other partners in silver category, such as: Nippon Gohsei, Mitsubishi Gas, Mitsubishi Chemical, Schur, IMD Vista, Gomensoro, Ermec, Systech Illinois, Mocon, Industrie Polieco-MPB, Mitsui Chemicals and Ecoflexobag.

Inma Gonzalvo (114 articles)


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Inma Gonzalvo
Marketing y Comunicación

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