Benders’ exhibition success highlights double wall trend

Benders Paper Cups has enjoyed a successful run of exhibitions in recent weeks with the leading paper cup company reporting a boost to forward orders and new business prospects following popular appearances at lunch! and the Dublin Coffee & Tea festival.

A favourite at both exhibitions has been the Embossed double walled hot cup which has struck a particular chord with the independent coffee shop market. Marketing manager for Benders, Adrian Pratt explains: “There is an increase in new businesses coming to market as the owners feels that the time is now right to set up shop.

“Having spoken to potential new customers at both exhibitions, there is a shared belief that the recovery in the economy is now sufficiently strong enough to launch a new business and many of these individuals consider their cup of choice to be our new Embossed double wall cup.

“These same new businesses are also interested in custom print as they want to hit the ground running, to make an impact and get their brands out there and known to potential customers. Whilst coffee consumption continues to rise, the ‘to go’ market in particular is still a competitive one and brands want to stand out.”

As one of the oldest companies in the Foodservice Packaging Association and one of a very few non-food factories to receive BRC/IOP A grade accreditation at the first audit, Benders is proud of its positioning as the UK’s single dedicated paper cup manufacturer.

With a full ‘Chain of Custody’ accreditation, all of its cups are manufactured in the UK using paper board from PEFC accredited sustainable managed forests. Each cup also complies with the stringent European Regulations for materials in contact with food.

Development of sustainable packaging tool to help SMEs

As part of its commitment to creating a sustainable future and business growth within the county, SUSTAIN Lincolnshire is currently developing a web-based sustainable packaging assessment tool to help small-to-medium sized enterprises create ‘greener’ packaging as a way of maintaining a competitive edge.

Leicestershire-based firm, Eco3 Design, have been commissioned to deliver a pilot project for the development of the tool, which is being designed to measure and report on packaging in terms of weight, volume, recycled content, carbon footprint and other criteria. The tool will also allow for the comparison of packaging alternatives to show how slight changes in materials and weight might effect certain sustainability parameters.

Leigh Holloway of Eco3 Design, says: “Over the years, sustainability has gone from being seen as a fringe activity to become a mainstream business concern, Policy makers, legislators and companies across the supply chain are all making it part of their mission to reduce the environmental impact of packaging.

“Because of this, many companies are having to measure and report on the environmental performance of their packaging. Some companies are even taking a more proactive approach by using packaging assessments at the design phase, which can offer an opportunity to reduce costs in their supply chains while also reinforcing their corporate social responsibility activities and brand image.

“However, we’ve found that due to a lack of skills and experience in this subject, smaller companies within Lincolnshire are finding it difficult to undertake these assessments. This affects their competitive edge, putting them at risk of losing business to competitors. As a result, SUSTAIN has commissioned Eco3 to undertake the development of a free packaging assessment tool that will help to address the skills gap.”

Tentatively set to be ready for testing towards the end of September 2014, the tool will be available for use by companies in Lincolnshire, free of charge, once completed and will be deliver results in non-specialist language so that they can be easily communicated to a range of stakeholders.

As part of the project, SUSTAIN Lincolnshire is looking for companies to take part in the project’s pilot phase. Those selected will receive free in-house training on sustainability in packaging and will be given access to, and training in the use of, the pilot tool.

Councillor Colin Davie, Executive Member for Economic Development at LCC, says: “The development of this new packaging tool achieves everything SUSTAIN was created to do – increase competitive edge, reduce operating costs and lower carbon footprints among the county’s SMEs.

“Once completed, this tool will be on offer to county businesses signed on to SUSTAIN as a way of putting them on the same level with larger firms that have access to comprehensive systems for assessing packaging.”

For more information about the sustainable packaging assessment tool or to become one of the companies involved in the tool’s pilot, email leigh@eco3.co.uk.

Chapelton to offer innovative Catcher Board MB12 from Smurfit Kappa

Speciality paper and cartonboard supplier Chapelton has announced the release of the new innovative packaging solution, the Catcher Board MB12 from Smurfit Kappa, which it will distribute into the UK packaging sector.

The Catcher Board MB12 is referred to by Smurfit Kappa as ‘the most innovative offering on the market’, and is produced using natural ingredients, which adhere to Smurfit Kappa’s industry-leading sustainability standards.

Neil Skelton, Chapelton Board Business Development Director, says, “Chapelton are delighted to be handling such an innovative food packaging product, which fits perfectly with our current speciality product range. What Smurfit Kappa have developed is ahead of the game in terms of its composition.”

Due to its composition, Catcher Board MB12 reduces the migration of any organic substances by 99%, and has been tested for a shelf life of more than twelve months. It is certified by Eurofins and ISEGA, both world leaders in the food and pharmaceutical product testing and approved laboratories for food safety.

The activated carbon layer in the recycled board keep pollutants within the material and adsorbs the odours even in the cut edges of the board, giving food products a reliable protection against migration contamination by organic materials. It also protects against organoleptic effects of any Taste and Odour into the food.

The new offering of Catcher Board MB12 has been developed in response to the prospective legislation which Germany intends to introduce that would prohibit the measurable migration of mineral oil and other hydrocarbons into food products.

According to Smurfit Kappa, whose Hoya mill is pictured, the new product looks, feels and reacts just like normal board during the packaging manufacturing process, and means that customers will not have to change of their processes as a result. With its introduction, it is hoped that Catcher Board MB12 will be the product that not only meets the new regulatory requirements, but also pre-empts customers’ future safety requirements.

Catcher Board MB 12 is 100% recyclable as a mono material, and as the activated carbon contained within its make-up originates from Forest Stewardship Council certified sources, the FSC Chain of Custody is maintained.

The Activated Carbon is contained in the grey middle plies (filler) of the board where all the organics are adsorbed and retained. Catcher Board MB12 will be made available across the cartonboard production, with weights from 300gsm to 500gsm, and as a solid board packaging product, in weights from 400gsm to 2000gsm.

Corrugated packaging helps discounters secure larger market share

Supermarket discounters are the fastest growing European retail sector, thanks in part to corrugated Shelf Ready Packaging, according to the European Federation of Corrugated Board Manufacturers.

German discount pioneers Aldi and Lidl are the two front runners across the continent, enjoying growth and increasing market share. The Schwarz Group, owner of Lidl, and the Aldi group are forecast to grow by 5% and 3.5% respectively per annum for the next five years, compared with mainstream retailers at less than 2%.

The success of the discounters is being aided by corrugated packaging’s eye-catching designs and its efficiency within the shelf replenishment process. Over 90% of the discounters' products use SRP, compared with only about 40% of non-discounters.

At Lidl stores a whole cross-section of food and household items are attractively displayed in corrugated SRP. Lidl also uses corrugated as part of its merchandising strategy, which involves printing a flag of country of origin on boxes and cartons in the fresh produce section. SRP provides significant cost savings - with canned foods, for example, shelf-refill costs are a third lower for products displayed in SRP than those displayed individually.

Angelika Christ, FEFCO’s Secretary General, says, “Corrugated has become an integral part of the discounter retail business model, because it’s great for display and great for reducing cost. That’s why corrugated is, and will remain, the number one choice for discounters.”

ABB robot palletising system features in mobile packaging plant

Robots from ABB have helped systems integrator RM Group to turn an innovative idea for a mobile packaging system into a working reality. Housed in 45ft articulated trailers, RM Group’s mobile packaging plant uses ABB’s IRB 6640 and IRB 460 robots as part of a system designed to provide customers with a versatile, efficient and easily transportable way of bagging products at source.

Specifically designed for applications involving high capacity production, the IRB 6640 has a payload of up to 235kg, enabling it to handle extremely heavy materials. With no tail swing, the IRB 6640 is ideal for restricted spaces such as small factory floors. Running the second generation of ABB’s TrueMove and QuickMove software, the robot offers greater movement accuracy, with less time needed for programming. New features including simplified fork lift pockets and more space in the robot foot help to simplify maintenance. Now 400kg lighter, the 6640 robot is also easier to install.

The world’s fastest palletiser, the compact four-axis IRB 460, is capable of up to 2190 cycles per hour, making it ideal for any high-speed end-of-line palletising system.

As well as improved efficiency, the system also helps users to realise operational and environmental improvements. By eliminating transportation between product source and packing location, the system not only helps to cut haulage expenses, but can also help to reduce Co2 emissions, with no need to ferry products to and from off-site bagging facilities.

Llewelyn Rees, Managing Director of RM Group, says, “The integration of ABB Robots allows for fast, automated palletising of the packaged products. The IRB 6640 robots have been a complete success for RM Group, coping with the high demands and withstanding thousands of miles of haulage and continual labour, while the IRB 460 helps to deliver fast packaging output speeds with combined precision in palletising. ABB are the first port of call for every project we undertake that involves robotic automation.”

Smurfit Kappa help improve your business in three minutes

Improving your business is usually a long and demanding process. However, Smurfit Kappa, the world’s leading producer of paper-based packaging, has condensed the process down to a maximum of three minutes.

Through extensive industry research, Smurfit Kappa offers valuable insights to set you above the competition. By turning their innovative insights into a bite-sized series of short-form videos, Smurfit Kappa has captured the essence of how companies around the world have revolutionised their performance and improved their interaction with customers.

Providing inspiration to market leaders and busy professionals is part of Smurfit Kappa’s tradition. Through the creation of its Open the Future online centre, unique insights into the issues faced by a variety of businesses from different markets, are offered. Smurfit Kappa are showing their customers how they can turn weaknessess into strengths.

The videos illustrate how the rationale of challenging accepted wisdom can create unique and profitable solutions to long-term business problems in an intelligent and easy to digest format.

Clive Bowers, CEO of Smurfit Kappa UK, says, “Smurfit Kappa’s extensive knowledge of business management, innovation and insights, alongside a fresh approach to understanding the marketplace, can give your business that elusive edge which will help set yourself above your competitors and help you sell more.”

The first of the short-form videos are available to view online at www.openthefuture.info and new videos covering a range of inspirational solutions to businesses from around the world will be added at regular intervals.

Industry pledge to put plastic packaging back on the agenda

Pledge 4 Plastics, the new government backed cross industry partnership, aims to increase the collection of plastic packaging for recycling.

With recycling levels plateauing and challenging recycling targets for packaging waste for the period 2013-17, it means plastic packaging recycling levels need to double over this five year period. Increasing household plastic packaging recycling will be pivotal to achieving these targets. Without intervention, the UK will fall short and PRN prices and costs to businesses will rise.

With all UK local authorities providing service provision for recycling of plastic bottles, the Pledge 4 Plastics campaign is urging people to make a promise to recycle just one extra plastic bottle per household each week using their existing services. With the current household plastic bottle recycling rate of only 58%, there is vast potential for increased collections. By diverting more material to recycling, this campaign will deliver economic and environmental benefits for waste management companies, local authorities and reprocessors.

Irrespective of collection service provision, this campaign recognises the opportunity to improve the consistency of message which will be key to reduce the confusion that consumers face. It's important to remember that Pledge 4 Plastics is not just about recycling water and drinks bottles, it includes all types of plastic bottles from every room in the home, ranging from shampoo bottles and shower gels, to domestic bleach and cooking oil bottles. Not forgetting of course to recycle food pots, tubs and trays (like yoghurt pots, margarine tubs and lasagne trays) where services exist to collect them for recycling.

The campaign has full government support. Resources Management Minister Dan Rogerson says, “The UK has made tremendous progress on recycling over the last ten years, building a stronger circular economy and greener society, and this reflects a lot of hard work from industry and local authorities, alongside a desire from residents to do more. This is another great initiative to boost the recycling of plastic packaging which has our full and ongoing support – I’ve already made my pledge and encourage others to sign-up to do their bit.”

A comprehensive toolkit has been developed to provide a wide range of resources which can be used by all organisations with the aim to ensure consistency in any UK communications about plastic packaging recycling. As well as background information on the aim and objectives of the campaign, the toolkit will include consumer insight research. The toolkit has been sent to all local authorities in the UK and a large number of stakeholders including brand owners, retailers and environmental bodies. The toolkit can also be downloaded.

NiceLabel announces new VP and General Manager EMEA

NiceLabel, developer of barcode and RFID labeling software, has appointed Greg Tanner as VP and General Manager EMEA. His addition further builds on NiceLabel’s continuous growth globally and further enforces its customer and partner support in the region.

Matej Kosmrlj, Managing Director, NiceLabel Group, says, “NiceLabel has a superior technology platform which allows us deliver solutions offering greater value to both smaller businesses and true global enterprises. Greg Tanner joins NiceLabel with an outstanding record in establishing and growing the two most successful pan-European companies in their industry sectors. His knowledge, skills and attitude will verify Greg as the best choice to foster partner and customer relationships to support NiceLabel desktop and cloud based label management solutions’ growth on a global scale."

With over 25 years of experience as an international high-growth technology business leader, Greg started, structured and grew the European division of one of the largest industrial printer manufacturers from start-up to over $100 million in pan-EMEA sales, distribution and support in the AIDC industry. In addition, he started the EMEA operations of Vocollect, the industry leading provider of innovative voice-enabled workflow and data collection solutions and grew it to account for over 50% of the company’s systems worldwide within six years. In both cases the companies achieved dominant market share positions under his leadership.

reg says, “NiceLabel has consistently achieved impressive growth figures. However, our ‘next generation’ software, which moves the focus on printing productivity and away from designing and printing, sets us and our channel partners ahead of our competitors and is driving accelerated demand in all markets – from small businesses through to global enterprise customers. I am delighted to join the company and contribute to its enhanced global growth."

Fourpure craft beer choose Rexam to produce bespoke can designs

Rexam has partnered with Fourpure Brewing Co, an independent British craft brewer, to develop unique designs for their newly canned craft beer range.

In a move that sees the brand switch from glass bottle to aluminium can, the six new designs depict the skyline of each city from which the characteristics of the beer are inspired. The innovative designs reflect the speciality of the Fourpure beers and use Rexam’s value added matt overvarnish to create strong stand out on shelf.

Speaking about the partnership, Daniel Lowe, Co-founder of Fourpure says: “With craft beer on the rise in an overall declining British beer market, it was essential to produce an interesting and unique design in order to differentiate our products from the macro breweries.

"Furthermore, as the first craft brewer in the UK to can it’s full core range we had to lead the way in packaging design in the emerging craft canning market. The bespoke designs and special finishes offered by Rexam are perfect for the evolution of the Fourpure brand to cans.”

The 33cl cans, produced out of Rexam’s Milton Keynes plant, will be sold in the on-trade, restaurants and specialist craft beer retailers.

Elegant beverage cups reinforce brand and reduce environmental impact

Printed in one colour but with an embossed pattern and message, the Invercote cup is extremely elegant and has a far lower environmental impact than plastic cups.

Iggesund Paperboard wanted to test the limits of what is possible and decided to create a large cup with a double-walled construction that is fairly common on the market. The double-walled construction means it is possible to use one material inside the cup and another for the outer wall, which functions as both a heat shield and a brand carrier.

Anna Adler, who is in charge of the project for Market Communications at Iggesund Paperboard, says, “For the cup’s inside we chose Invercote coated with polyethylene and for the outside we used Aluvision, which is Invercote extrusion coated with a thin layer of aluminium foil plus PE on top of the foil. We wanted the metallic feature in order to achieve elegance and shine even though we only printed with one colour, vintage orange.”

The project used an ornamental pattern that framed Iggesund’s Invercote brand. The plan was to cover everything except the pattern with the orange colour and then get the pattern and product name to shine by giving them a raised embossing. The Swiss toolmaker SMR Stanztechnik AG supplied the high-precision embossing tool and the printing was then done by the Italian paper cup specialists SDG.

Iggesund’s Technical Service Manager Alex Guglielmi says, “We did a number of tests to find out how much we should emboss but finally decided to emboss the entire pattern and brand name. It was interesting to see how the embossing made the metallic tones that weren’t overprinted with orange really shine. A real eye catcher.”

Matching the printed and embossed areas was a real challenge. To be certain of avoiding any misregister, it was decided to reduce the number of cup blanks per printed sheet from 27 to 24.

Alex Guglielmi says, “Invercote has fantastic dimensional stability but sometimes it’s better to be on the safe side. Instead of going with 27 we decided to be cautious and only do 24. It’s still a fantastic result for anyone who wants elegance and a visual impression that can convey a brand."

The paperboard’s printability and ability to be finished to a high level of elegance are not the only reasons why Iggesund believes in a renaissance for paperboard-based beverage cups. Competing materials such as traditional plastic or polystyrene foam cups create a much higher carbon footprint than a cup made of paperboard with a thin PE coating.

Anna Adler says, “A cup made of PE-coated Invercote has a carbon footprint that is scarcely a quarter the size of the one left by the same cup made of plastic – just comparing the weight of the materials used. By that measure alone, the paperboard cup is the clear winner. If you add the existence of efficient recycling systems and the fact that the stored bioenergy can finally be recovered, paperboard is an outstanding choice of material.”

Iggesund perceives long-term business opportunities for such a product, not least in the US, where debates are currently raging over the environmental aspects of polystyrene foam cups. A number of American cities are trying to forbid the use of polystyrene foam materials in beverage cups and catering packs.

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