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CCL Industries, a world leader in specialty label, security and packaging solutions, announced it has signed a binding agreement to acquire Pouch Partners s.r.l. Italy (“Pouch Partners”) from Pouch Partners AG Switzerland, a company owned by Swiss headquartered Capri-Sun Group.

Pouch Partners, currently a provider of flexible laminates to the Capri Sun Group to make its iconic Capri Sun pouches, has been operating as a family owned business for the last 50 years and has been part of the Capri Sun Group since October 2017.

Guenther Birkner, President of CCL Label Food & Beverage, commented: “Pouches are a packaging format we’ve looked at for a long time as an adjacency to our label and sleeve decorating technologies with a similar modus operandi. Our common customers see them as an interesting alternative to rigid containers with labels. Pouch Partners has highly focused, deep know-how for these materials, a solid foundation to enter this market. If our investment is successful in Europe, there could be interest to develop the product line globally, alongside our decorative label portfolio”

Since several years there has been a lot of development and innovation in the packaging market with the goal to make packaging more reusable and recyclable to support a circular economy. One major trend has been to provide a refillable solution for the parent packaging. Typically the parent packaging is a more premium bottle or container and the pouches provide the refill option. The new business will then trade as CCL Specialty Pouches and become an integral part of CCL Label’s Food & Beverage division.

“There are opportunities to utilise this technology in the Food & Beverage and the Home & Personal Care spaces and interesting potential to design new, sustainable, barrier films at our sister company Innovia Films who are experts in material science and develop the packaging materials of the future. We see many of our global brand customers turn to alternative packaging solutions to substitute packaging that has a high carbon footprint, pouches provide a lightweight solution.” says Reinhard Streit, Vice President & Managing Director Food & Beverage Europe.

Pouches, made from flexible material, are designed to minimise the use of packaging materials. They are very light and reduce the ecological footprint during transportation and storage. They have an outstanding packaging-to-product ratio compared to rigid packaging types and the shape and the format can be adjusted to exactly fit the product volume resulting in material savings*. CCL is working with its sustainability partners along the whole value chain with organisations like CELAB, Plastic Recycler’s Europe and RecyClass to make sure the pouches can and will be recycled.

“After the development of our recyclable pouch for Capri Sun with the help of Pouch Partners, it was time to focus again on our core business: Beverages. Divesting the business to CCL, a large and successful player in packaging, makes a lot of sense for the future. We are excited to continue to partner with CCL, now as a strategic customer, and will for sure benefit from their deep expertise, R&D resource and worldwide presence”, said Roland Weening, CEO of the Capri Sun Group and Chairman of Pouch Partners AG.

*Source: Flexible Packaging Europe (FPE)

Jufico, a leading German baby-food producer, will be the first to launch its organic brand FruchtBar® in fully recyclable monomaterial pouches without aluminium (Pouch5®) into the German market. Pouch5® was developed by Gualapack, world leader of premade spouted pouches, and is the first pre-made spouted pouch available in high barrier recyclable monomaterial. The 5 new references will hit the shelves from May 25.

German consumers are well-informed and sensitive to recyclability, and in Germany separate collection and recycling infrastructure of flexible packaging are among the best in the world. Jufico, under the brand FRUCHTBAR® , has indeed captured the momentum and the needs of the market in terms of circular economy, spearheading the recyclable revolution with Pouch5®.

Gualapack Pouch5® is available in 2 versions:  for hot-filled and pasteurized shelf stable products, and for cold filling /dairy applications. Pouch 5® guarantees product protection equivalent to conventional pouches thanks to its high oxygen and water vapor barrier.

Pouch5® is certified by Interseroh Dienstleistungs-GmbH for its recyclability. Interseroh is an environmental service provider and is best known for its dual system with the yellow bag / yellow bin. Interseroh’s highly scientific criteria for testing a wide variety of packaging have been developed together with bifa environmental and Fraunhofer IVV institutes. With a score of 20 out of 20, Pouch5® achieves the best possible rating and is proven “very good” for recyclability.

In recent years Gualapack has developed a vast portfolio of sustainable solutions to actively reduce the footprint of packaging. Thanks to the vertical integration of technologies such as extrusion, lamination, printing, pouch making, injection molding and filling equipment, Gualapack can offer proven and market-ready packaging solutions that provide effective answers to the industry, the environment, consumers and legislators.

Pouch5® was recently adopted by Nestle (Gerber®) in the USA and Nestle (Piltti®) in Finland.

Creating flexible packaging from virgin grade material derived from plastic waste is now taking a step towards reality in a pilot project called ChemCyclingTM

Leading global packaging and paper group Mondi, in cooperation with chemical producer BASF and COROOS, one of the biggest European companies in the preservation of fruits, vegetables and pulses for premium A-brands and private label products, have cooperated on a state-of-the-art pilot project. Together they produced a stand-up pouch that is safe for food contact partly made with raw material which was derived from chemically recycled plastic. Until now, recycling plastic has chiefly been mechanical, limiting the scope of plastics that can be recycled and limiting the number of products that can be created with recycled material, in particular for the strict legal European regulations in place for food packaging.

Mondi believes that packaging should be sustainable by design, using paper where possible, and plastic when useful. For food protection and extending shelf life, plastic is often the best choice because of its barrier properties. These requirements make it difficult to use mechanically recycled plastic due to potential impurities and plastic flaws that can occur in the layers, limiting the applicability for food contact. “BASF is working on advancing the chemical recycling of plastic waste, because this will make it possible to process and reuse plastics that are currently difficult to recycle such as mixed plastics. This prototype packaging which is based on pyrolysis oil derived from waste plastic shows that the life cycle of consumer plastics, including multilayer packaging, could become a closed loop,” explained Christoph Gahn, who is responsible for the polyamide business at BASF.

As a leader in the flexible packaging market, Mondi partnered with BASF to produce this virgin grade material into a multi-layer laminate for food packaging for COROOS private label products and their own A-brand Servero. In the manufacturing, 100 % of the fossil feedstock was replaced by pyrolysis oil derived from mixed recycled material for one of the inner layers (oriented polyamide, OPA-12 mm). In total 12 % of the packaging weight is made of ChemCycled material. The recycled material was allocated via a certified mass balance approach. Graeme Smith – Sustainability Manager for Mondi Consumer Packaging – explained more about the pilot project: “It is important to show proof of concept when establishing breakthrough developments, and for chemical recycling it is an essential part of the roadmap to commercialising this process in the future.”

Sustainable solutions are not just a priority for Mondi, but across the entire value chain: “COROOS is partnering in this project because we care about sustainability and are looking into different options to improve our footprint, e.g. by using packaging from recycled materials, packaging materials being recyclable and/or by being re-usable” shared Elke Schroevers, the Marketing Manager of COROOS. With this development, the way is paved for plastic waste to become a new resource for flexible packaging while replacing fossil fuels.

New system will enable companies to substantially improve capacity and operational performance, dramatically cutting rejection rates in the process JBT Corporation has announced the launch of a new solution for filling flexible pouches commonly used in the infant nutrition and sports drinks categories, which could spark further market growth for the sector. The JBT AsepFlex™ Linear Pouch Filler has been developed to overcome problems associated with current pouch packaging, including a high rejection rate and low capacity.

The market of flexible packaging is growing, with pouches becoming the preferred option for processors and consumers thanks to their non-breakable, lightweight, easy to open, and easy to empty (squeezable) characteristics. In the infant nutrition category flexible pouches are expected to grow their market share by 10 % each year.

However, growth in the category has been restricted by limits to current pouch filling technology. The two existing shelf stable pouch solutions both suffer from significant drawbacks. Solutions using an aseptic form fill seal typically have a low capacity and a high Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) due to a high rejection rate. Hot fill with retort sterilization solutions, meanwhile, often have low (120 ppm) capacity and low product quality.

The JBT AsepFlex Linear Pouch Filler has been developed to solve the problems with these existing solutions by substantially improving capacity and operational performance. With a capacity as high as 500 ppm – or 30,000 pouches per hour – the fully aseptic solution is designed in accordance with the FDA guidelines for low acid aseptically filled food products and can achieve an impressive operational performance, with a 95 % efficiency rate and a typical reject rate of only 0.5 %.

JBT Product Manager, Bert Krakers, said: “Apart from capacity and aseptic integrity, the AsepFlex Filler offers flexibility. Pouch formats and sizes can be changed on the fly without the necessity to change parts.”

The filling system, he explained, can fill a wide range of products from water-like liquids through to high viscous products, such as smoothies with particulates. It can also be equipped with a nitrogen dosing system to reduce the oxygen in the headspace of the pouch, which limits the chemical deterioration (oxidation) of the product, helping maximize product shelf life in the process.

The JBT AsepFlex Filler has been designed for use with infant nutrition products, such as fruit and vegetable purees, and ready-to-drink baby food, as well as sports and breakfast drinks ‘on-the-go’, and nutraceutical products. A first AsepFlex filling unit in Europe has recently been supplied to a leading specialist in infant nutrition.