The Paper Bottle Company (Paboco®) - a joint venture between paper packaging material developer BillerudKorsnäs and bottle manufacturing specialist ALPLA -has announced that Avantium joins the Paper Bottle Project.

Avantium will be one of the technology providers for the fully plant-based and recyclable Paper Bottle. A thin layer of Avantium’s PEF (polyethylene furanoate) will provide the Paper Bottle with the high barrier properties (the ability to withstand gas permeability through the bottle) needed for beverages such as beer and carbonated soft drinks. 

The Paper Bottle Project is an innovation community joining some of the world's leading players in materials, design and technology. In 2015 the large brewery Carlsberg Group joined the Paper Bottle Project, followed by leading brand owners such as cosmetics manufacturer L’Oréal, global spirits company The Absolut Company, soft drink company Coca-Cola Europe and global coatings company Teknos. The Paper Bottle Project now runs as its own business, name and brand – Paboco®, the Paper Bottle Company. 

The Paper Bottle is the first of its kind for beer, carbonated and still drinks, beauty products and more. The Paper Bottle is using renewable paper to build strength and structure, supported by a barrier solution being Avantium’s PEF. PEF is a 100% plant-based and recyclable polymer that can be applied to an enormous range of applications, including packaging of soft drinks, water, alcoholic beverages and fruit juices. PEF’s barrier and thermal properties are claimed to be superior to conventional PET. In combination with a significantly reduced carbon footprint, the added functionality may give PEF all the attributes to become the next-generation polyester. 

It is possible to fully recycle the Paper Bottle by separating the paper and PEF. By separation, each layer becomes a mono-material returned to the recycling stream. Development work of the Paper Bottle with the PEF layer is in progress. The focus will be on building experience with Pioneer Brands, and look to 2020 to start controlled testing.  

“Participating in the Paper Bottle Project and collaborating with like-minded companies within the Paboco Pioneer Community – from bottle manufacturers to consumer brands – on developing new sustainable packaging material is a great opportunity for Avantium. It is a milestone in the development of high-value applications such as specialty bottles. The Paper Bottle shows how we, together with partners, can use innovation to help shape packaging for a circular and sustainable future,” says Marcel Lubben, Managing Director Avantium Renewable Polymers.