Thanks to its convenience and wide range of functionalities, flexible packaging has found its way into almost every area of our daily life, such as snack pouches, frozen food pouches, refill pouches, and etc. However, today’s flexible packaging is consists of several layers of different materials that are inseparable. this means it is difficult to recycle and end up in landfills, leading to environmental impact. Recognizing how such a small part of our daily life can have tremendous impact, SCGC has developed innovative materials and Recyclable Packaging Solution under the umbrella of SCGC GREEN POLYMER™ that use entirely from polyolefin and oxygen barrier coating technology for multi layers of packaging, with the goal of making flexible packaging completely recyclable.
We met with Ms. Rungtip Jongsuebchoke, Food and Beverage Business Director, SCGC, to discuss SCGC’s goal of developing materials for recyclable packaging and creating the Recyclable Packaging Solution, which can address the needs of the entire supply chain and will lead to the invention of flexible packaging that is fully in keeping with the principles of circular economy.
“SCGC strives to develop packaging that is not only recyclable but also functional and can be made available at an affordable price. Our Recyclable Packaging Solution delivers not just a single material, but a range of materials for all the film layers that make up flexible packaging, each of which may have distinct properties. An example is the recently unveiled BWO1501G, the first oxygen barrier coating technology in Southeast Asia to be certified by RecyClass, world’s renowned certified body on recyclable plastic packaging.”
“All materials developed as part of the Recyclable Packaging Solution must undergo a series of quality tests conducted by our expert partners in the industry who share our goal of making recyclable packaging a reality, including film makers, laminators, and recyclers. The plastic generated from the recycling process also be tested by our internal laboratories to ensure the quality of the solutions to be offered to general manufacturers and brand owners.”
Quality Films and Sustainability Vision of Unique Plastic Industry
A key partner who has adopted SCGC’s innovation is Unique Plastic Industry Co., Ltd., an expert on the manufacturing of film – an essential component of flexible packaging. SCGC worked with Unique Plastic Industry to produce machine-direction orientation polyethylene (MDOPE) film, co-extruded films stretched in the machine direction for enhanced strength, to serve as printing layer in flexible packaging, for ability to produce recyclable packaging with comparable performance to replace BOPET films.
We talked to Mr. Nithat Nawachartkosit, Chairman of Unique Plastic Industry Co., Ltd., about the collaboration with SCGC to establish a foundation for recyclable packaging, which is aligned with the organization’s environmental vision.
“Unique has always taken action towards sustainability. The cornerstones of our organization are the 3Ps: People, Planet, and Profit, which must be developed alongside one another. We have put in place a clear product policy to become a leader in all types of recyclable films in order to be environmentally and socially responsible, and the development of recyclable packaging is aligned with our policy and direction.
“Sharing the same vision, we have co-developed a MDOPE film with SCGC as a specialized material for recyclable packaging. We have a specific manufacturing process that produces thinner films with greater strength and stability that can undergo high-speed printing effectively. The MDOPE film made with SCGC’s resin marks the first step towards a substitute material for recyclable packaging.”
“It is the readiness and cooperation of all parties that has enabled us to achieve this sustainability goal together. The successful development of this innovation is due to partnership, experience sharing, and collaborative testing and has accelerated the development and introduction of recyclable packaging to the market to promptly and effectively meet the demand.”
Thai Nam Poly Pack’s Transition to Recyclable Flexible Packaging
Thai Nam Poly Pack is a plastic packaging manufacturer that prioritizes functional properties, such as strength and the ability to support weight, as well as the aesthetic quality of the packaging, such as clarity and crisp printed details.
We talked to Mr. Wattana Krisnavarin, Deputy Managing Director of Thai Nam Poly Pack Co., Ltd., about how flexible packaging manufacturers have adapted and what is their vision towards the development of recyclable packaging.
“At Thai Nam, we seek to follow the BCG (Bio-Circular-Green) policy, which is encapsulated within our own green packaging policy. As such, we would like to see MDOPE films as an alternative material for entrepreneurs so that they can help make the world greener and transition towards a circular economy. Therefore, we have tried to invent different types of films that will be suitable for recyclable packaging while retaining the physical properties and stability, so that they can undergo printing and laminating and can be used in place of BOPET films in the printing layer and laminated with LLDPE film. What we are looking to achieve at the end is flexible packaging with the same appearance and functionalities that consumers are familiar with.”
“We have tested the MDOPE film produced by Unique and found that it has high heat resistance and stability, which means it is suitable for stand-up pouches. When compared to the BOPET film in the printing layer, the only difference is clarity. The key is to fine-tune the production process, from printing and laminating all the way to pouch making, in order to achieve similar production speed and quality as before, which will help with the costs of the products.”
The New Packaging was Proven Recyclable at Raikhing Plastic Recycle
We went to Raikhing Plastic Recycle Co., Ltd. to talk to Mr. Chaiwat Ratchawattana, Managing Director, as the company had demonstrated reprocessing tests the recyclability with mechanical recycling technologies of the new packaging made with material developed by SCGC. Traditional flexible packaging is difficult to be recycled because it is made of multiple materials with vastly different melting points, which do not melt homogeneously and can thus disrupt the machine during the melting process – the primary limitation for the current recycling process.
“Because it is composed primarily of polyolefins, the new packaging developed SCGC can be recycled without a problem and can be melted and produced into quality Post-Consumer Recycled Resin (PCR), thus marking a good starting point for a circular economy.”
“Plastics have come under fire for their supposed environmental impacts. However, if everyone acts more eco-consciously, such as by producing recyclable packaging right from the beginning and properly sorting and recycling waste, and if the PCR market continues to expand as it is now, it will be possible for us to recycle more effectively and at an even larger scale.”
If you are interested in the Recyclable Packaging Solution for flexible packaging in support of the circular economy principles, please contact us for more information at email@example.com.