SIG announced today that it will invest €12 million in a pilot plant of its new European technology centre, which will be located near its packaging plants in Linnich, Germany.

According to SIG, the new tech centre will help it meet increasing demand for more sustainable packaging solutions. The company considers its ‘Tech Center Europe’ to be an “important lever” in the fast, reliable, and efficient production of new packaging solutions and materials.

At Tech Center Europe, existing facilities will be complemented with new extrusion and finishing technology, as well as more advanced quality measurement systems and testing equipment. This will apparently increase serial production processability, system validation and future digital technology capacities.

The company says the new centre will allow it to increase the co-development of products with SIG customers, speeding up innovation cycles by carrying out short-run test fillings. It will also serve as a showcase plant and location for project interaction with customers and stakeholder meetings.

Marcel Schopen, department manager for the Test Field, Prototype and Pilot Plant at SIG, says: “Our new Tech Center Europe will make us even faster and more efficient in bringing new products and packaging solutions to market. It will help our customers to keep one step ahead of trends and changing consumer demands.

“In the pilot plant and test field of our Tech Center we support all processes from start to finish, including sleeve production, filling products and pallet packing.”

José Matthijsse, president and general manager Europe at SIG, adds: “Our new Tech Center will create capacities for packaging innovation that will shape SIG’s future growth in Europe.

“It will enable us to co-develop with our customers and better meet their needs, further strengthening our partnerships and expanding the service we provide to our customers in Europe.”

This investment marks a further commitment by SIG to sustainable packaging innovations in Europe. Earlier this year, SIG debuted its Paper U-straw for aseptic cartons in a bid to reduce single-use plastics. The company also announced the launch of tethered caps for its beverage cartons, made from polymers linked to renewable materials, ahead of the European Union’s July 2024 deadline.

Built according to the latest energy standards and food hygiene regulations, the pilot plant is scheduled to be operational by the end of 2022.