Apparently, Mondi’s Hug&Hold – its paper-based alternative to plastic shrink wrap for bottle bundle packs – reduces carbon footprint by 43% compared to LDPE shrink wrap, alongside other reported environmental benefits.

A life cycle assessment (LCA) was completed to compare the environmental impact of Hug&Hold in comparison with low-density polyethylene shrink wrap for six 1.5 litre PET beverage bottles. It assessed a total of sixteen indicators, ranging from the acquisition of raw material and production processes to typical end-of-life treatment in the EU27.

The results suggest that Hug&Hold has lower impact in terms of climate change, fossil resource consumption, photochemical ozone formation, acidification, ionizing radiation, water use, and eutrophication of freshwater.

According to Mondi, its overall carbon footprint is 43% lower than the standard LDPE virgin plastic shrink wrap and 15% lower than LDPE shrink wrap with 100% recycled content.

Mondi states that the LCAs it commissions are critically received and ISO-compliant, utilizing the Environmental Footprint method.

Hug&Hold consists of a kraft paper sleeve, which secures the bottles in transit; and a corrugated carrying handle applied to each bottle’s neck, integrated into the solution for both convenience and strength. It is said to be fully recyclable.

“Mondi values independent critical reviews and a data-driven route to help customers assess the environmental impact of their products,” says Silvia Hanzelova, sales director Speciality Kraft Paper. “This LCA on Hug&Hold delivers on that.

“The results play a vital role in our customers’ decision-making process, which ensures that we keep creating sustainable solutions in line with our MAP2030 (Mondi Action Plan 2030) commitments, providing effective and creative solutions – that are sustainable by design and successful in application.”

Tarik Aniba, sales and marketing director Corrugated Solutions, added: “We are proud to see our Hug&Hold solution outperform conventional LDPE shrink wrap in multiple environmental categories. This result highlights our ongoing commitment to developing forward-thinking, eco-friendly packaging solutions.

“In choosing Hug&Hold, our partners can achieve their environmental objectives without compromising packaging quality and reliability.”

Mondi has scheduled a free, live webinar covering the beverage packaging market, including Hug&Hold and its sustainability benefits, on 5th June 2024.

Last year we spoke to Tarik Aniba, who explained that the ‘plastic-free’ solution ‘has been tested and confirmed in the fully automated process’ – a feature expected to help brand owners transition into a packaging solution that has been designed for recycling.

More recently, Mondi has worked with Meurer to secure coffee packs in transit with its paper-based TrayWrap solution instead of flexible plastic. TrayWrap is reported to be recyclable and, as well as aligning with EU legislation, claims to be compatible with existing machinery.

At the Sustainable Packaging Summit 2023, Barbara Dunin, director of ESG, Marketing and Communications at Beontag, walked us through the ways in which LCAs can respond to growing pushback against greenwashing and support sustainability claims.

However, the Renewable Carbon Initiative fears that products derived from crude oil and natural gas could have much higher carbon footprints than previously thought. New data sets apparently suggest that LCAs underestimate the carbon footprints of commodity plastics by around 30%, and that of fossil naphtha by almost 50%.

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