Waddington Europe, a division of Novolex, is set to introduce a new tray for meat, fish, and poultry products that is recyclable and does not require a polyethylene (PE) layer or adhesive coating.

According to the company, its new Piranha container is sealed using a series of raised teeth that run around the sealing flange instead of applying a layer of PE or adhesive, which are typically used to seal the lid of modified atmosphere packaging (MAP). Waddington Europe claims that the raised teeth maintain the seal’s integrity even if the flange becomes contaminated by animal fat.

Greasy contaminants such as animal fat can interfere with the closure of traditional packaging for meat, fish, and poultry products. However, Waddington Europe’s Piranha solution apparently forces contaminants into channels between the raised teeth, leaving the peaks clear and clean to contact the PET top web.

The company says that the PET top web is then able to adhere to the peaks under the same sealing temperatures and dwell time, creating the seal despite the presence of contaminants. During filling-line trials of Piranha, the problem of burst seals due to grease contamination on mono-rPET sealing was reportedly cut to almost zero.

Eduardo Gomes, managing director of Waddington Europe, comments: “We are always trying to find innovative ways to reduce our carbon footprint and promote circularity, as well as help our customers and their consumers do the same.

“Our packaging development team has really hit the mark with Piranha, enabling us to optimise the use of recycled content and provide a product that’s capable of being easily recycled back into food-grade rPET.”

Previous innovations from Waddington Europe include a hot fill option for its rPEt TamperVisible product line for soups and sauces and a 100% monomaterial punnet for soft fruit that uses built-in cushioning technology to protect products, both released in 2021.