27 Mar 2018 --- Taghleef Industries showcased their approach to modern, sustainable, flexible packaging and positioning themselves firmly as within a circular economy at Anuga FoodTec 2018. The show had a reported record-breaking number of visitors (50,000) when held in Cologne, Germany last week: an 11 percent increase from 2017. The show also attracted visitors from over 152 countries and comprised of 1,700 exhibitors.
At the show, the Innova Market Insights reported how the number of new global food & beverages with a “bio-based/biodegradable” packaging has quadrupled from 2013 to 2017. The researcher noted how “growing initiatives on recycled,” strategies for “reduced material” and the rise of “biodegradable alternatives” are contributing to innovation in this space.
Sustainability was a key theme resonating throughout Anuga Foodtec 2018, and it seemed particularly well represented by the Taghleef stand.
FoodIngredientsFirst spoke to Mario Molinaro, Business Unit Director of Taghleef Industries, to understand the position of Taghleef within the food industry as tackling packaging sustainability, and what they were offering on the floor.
Taghleef displayed their chosen packaging innovations, Extendo and Nativia, as couched within their three business pillars.
Firstly, food protection as paramount to their products. Meaning, the protective films, and packaging they offer will protect food from mineral oils, gas, and extend shelf-life. Secondly, sustainability as driving their innovation to supply sustainable, recyclable and bio-degradable packaging options to the market. And thirdly, the circular economy is becoming more important in the industry and Taghleef are responding with recyclable, flexible packaging options. Overall, Molinaro states that Taghleef have a unique approach which creates a new market in waste regeneration.
Key to this “unique” approach are their ranges, Extendo and Nativia.
The Extendo high barrier film range brings together the advantages of BoPP films with the barrier performance typical of other high barrier polymers, providing innovative solutions for packaging weight reduction and improved recyclability due to mono-material barrier laminate design.
“Extendo films are high-tech and can replace aluminum foil and multi-material laminates containing AI, PET and PVDC components in the industry, this will reduce the waste of a product through packaging, but also extend its shelf-life, to reduce food waste,” says Molinaro.
In line with their first pillar of food protection, “Extendo films offer food protection from mineral oils and extend the products shelf-life,” and furthermore, in line with their stance on sustainability and a circular economy, “the film is made with more mono-materials, which means the whole film is more recyclable and sustainable,” explains Molinaro.
Nativia goes a step further in the recyclability chain, as it is an entirely biodegradable film.
The film, Nativia Ness, was developed by Taghleef in a close collaboration with Mars, Rodenburg and Mondi, and won the eleventh Global Bioplastics Award for a
chocolate bar wrapper developed for Mars and Snickers bars packaging. It is derived from starch, created from the side-stream of potato processing.
The solution has already been adopted by Mars in a test launch in the Netherlands, Germany and France, with a likely mainstream rollout still unclear. This new generation of bio-oriented and bio-based films fulfils all product protection requirements for chocolate packaging, is food approved and is able to meet the same speed of BoPP films on packaging lines.
The packaging material is fairly indistinguishable from the regular wrapper, which is why Mars decided to avoid any active promotion around the sustainable advantage of the packaging to consumers.
The Nativia range also touts Nativia NTSS, a highly glossy film which is also completely transparent. Nativia NTSS has been used in applications from pasta bags to bread bags and fresh produce, such as salads.
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“Today, you cannot avoid plastic packaging when it comes to food products, and this ultimately generates too much global waste. The point is that now, that we must balance our packaging, and its accompanying waste, with recyclability”, says Malinaro. “We are able to provide such packaging that is recyclable, sustainable and biodegradable.”
Their packaging solutions, Malinaro goes on to explain, also protect food items fully from outside influences, making the situation a “win-win for all.”
And what does the future hold for Taghleef?
Essentially, Molinaro indicates that he sees the majority of growth to continue with the substitution of Nativia, over aluminum and other laminates, for flexible packaging, in order to provide the flexible packaging sector with the tools to continue its growth: sustainably.
Plastic-free and bio alternatives are quickly becoming typical terms in the food industry. FoodIngredientsFirst has previously reported on bioplastic packaging for cheese and, the potential for eco-friendly packaging to aid product shelf-life.
By Laxmi Haigh
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