At interpack 2023, adapa Group’s VACUshrink(re) MEX 55 – a PE-based, food-contact shrink bag reported to be fully recyclable – won the PackTheFuture Award 2023 in the Design for Recycling category.

Apparently, the bag has been designed in line with the CEFLEX Design for a Circular Economy Guideline and does not require PA layers or PVDC barriers, instead offering EVOH high barrier. Its film thickness of 55 μm is thought to combine product protection with processability and sustainability benefits.

Amongst other properties, its three-dimensional stretching gives the bag ‘excellent’ mechanical properties, according to adapa Group. As such, it claims to offer puncture resistance and is compatible with standard packaging systems for processing.

The pack is expected to be applied to fresh, processed meat or non-gassy/ripened cheese.

IK Industrievereinigung Kunststoffverpackungen and its partner Elipso are responsible for presenting the PackTheFuture Award, which rewards innovative and sustainability-minded plastic packaging solutions. Its overall goal is to bring awareness to the benefits of plastic packaging in climate protection, responsible consumption, and circularity.

“After the German Packaging Award 2022 in the Sustainability category and the World Star Packaging Award 2023 in the Packaging Materials and Components category, the PackTheFutureAward 2023 in the Design for Recycling category is another valuable confirmation of our commitment to greater sustainability,” says Marek Pawlak, CEO of adapa. “With this, we also make our strategic focus on recyclable packaging materials visible to the outside world and prove that we, as a specialist for flexible packaging, are taking responsibility and helping to shape the path towards a circular economy in our industry.”

Sealed Air’s food-grade shrink film containing 30% post-consumer recycled packaging was nominated as a finalist under the ‘Driving the Circular Economy’ category of the Sustainability Awards 2022.

EMSUR also released the ECOEM-Sleeves, a range of PET-based shrink sleeve solutions utilising washable inks. Set to be applied to bottled drinks, the sleeves intended to prevent the contamination of waste streams and improve recyclability.

Other solutions have sought to replace plastic shrink film altogether, including Mondi’s recyclable paper alternative, Hug&Hold.

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