EMSUR’s new shrink sleeve solutions for bottled drinks are based on a combination of PET-based films and washable inks, with the aim of improving recyclability by avoiding contamination from material residues during the recycling process.

The ECOEM-Sleeves were developed by EMSUR at its Technology Innovation Centre INNOTECH, which opened in 2019. The shrink sleeve solutions are intended for bottled carbonated drinks, water, juice, or drinkable yogurts.

According to EMSUR, the beverage industry uses bottle shrink sleeves to enhance product differentiation on shelves, display strategic brand messages, or provide nutritional information. The sleeves are typically removed from the bottles at the washing stage of recycling processes, in order to avoid contamination of the PET flakes that are later used in the post-consumer recycling flow.

EMSUR says its new line is based on eco-design principles and features a combination of PET-based films and washable inks that can be mixed and recycled with PET bottles without any clumping of residues or interruption in the drying and decontamination processes. The product can reportedly also be manufactured with post-consumer recycled content and has APR certification for washable inks, which EMSUR claims can prevent discolouration of the flakes from the recycled PET bottles.

Products in the new range include ECOEM-FULL PET Sleeve, a shrink sleeve solution based on a combination of films and washable inks for simplified recycling processes, and EMFULL, a polyolefin-based sleeve option with floatability properties that apparently allow it to be separated directly from the bottle during the washing phase of the recycling process.

Other solutions offered by the range include different materials such as PETG, with available post-consumer recycled content and different types of finishes, including high gloss, matte, or transparent, and other differentiating elements like holographic effects, glow-in-the-dark pigments, and gold and silver inks.

EMSUR adds that any other material can be used in combination with these bottles with the micro-perforation option, which means the bottles are also recyclable with the aid of consumer interaction.

Last year, EMSUR introduced a range of PE and PP-based flexible packaging also developed at INNOTECH, offering “excellent barrier and sealing properties” with monomaterial substrates instead of conventional duplex structures.