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Packaging material origin rising in importance

By Rod Addy , 10-Oct-2012

Coca-Cola's PlantBottle is one example of the growing prominence of bioplastics

Coca-Cola's PlantBottle is one example of the growing prominence of bioplastics

The origin of packaging materials is rising in importance, according to the NVC Netherlands Packaging Centre, commenting on emerging packaging trends.

Ger Standhardt, manager, knowledge development & projects at the centre, told that many governments and companies were still prioritising packaging recyclability.

However, he said: “We do notice that the origin of materials is gaining importance; in the field of biopolymers it is now found more important that it is biobased than whether it is compostable.”

NVC Netherlands Packaging Centre said biodegradable, recyclable and renewable materials that support a natural product image are undeniably taking the spotlight, with bioplastics and paper or carton-based packaging a prominent trend.

Coca-Cola’s PlantBottle

Examples of this include Coca-Cola’s PlantBottle made partly from plants, it said.

Other rising trends in the Netherlands include resealable packaging for meat and cheese, according to Standhardt.

Packaging aimed at aging consumers – what the NVC Packaging Centre termed ‘Best Agers’ – was another driver for innovation at the moment, he said.

‘Best Agers’

“Best Agers are people that (want) to stay healthy and enjoy life while they get older. Accessible design for packaging is important for them. Even though their strength and senses are deteriorating they still want to be able to open the packaging so they can use the products they want and need.”

One example of this in glass jar packaging was the 1-2-OPEN closure, designed by Plato Product Consultants and developed and tested by Crown Closures, HAK and Tata Steel. This consists of a central panel sealed to the jar by vacuum and an outer ring screwed in place to provide protection.

The closure offered a solution to jars with lids that stubbornly refuse to budge and was twice as easy to open, the company claims.

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