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Tetra Pak tests an industry-first: a fibre-based barrier to replace the aluminium layer

Eating, Drinking, Primary Packaging, Cartons/Bricks, Food/Beverage Bricks

Marking a breakthrough in the company’s journey towards a fully renewable aseptic package, this innovative fibre-based material substitutes the aluminium layer, with the ambition of reducing the carbon footprint while making the post-consumer cartons more attractive for recyclers.

Following the successful completion of a 15-month commercial technology validation of a polymer-based barrier replacing the aluminium layer, Tetra Pak is now moving to the next level of development - testing a fibre-based barrier that is a first within food carton packages distributed under ambient conditions.

This step marks yet another breakthrough in the company’s long-term roadmap towards developing an aseptic package that is fully renewable, fully recyclable and carbon-neutral.

The aluminium layer currently used in food carton packages plays a critical role in ensuring food safety; and even though it is thinner than a human hair, it contributes to a third of the green-house gas emissions linked to base materials used by Tetra Pak.

With a view to reducing this climate impact, a commercial technology validation was conducted in Japan starting late 2020, using a polymer-based barrier to replace the aluminium layer. This helped to understand the value chain implications of the change, and to quantify the carbon footprint reduction. It also confirmed adequate oxygen protection for vegetable juice, while enabling increased recycling rates in a country where recyclers favour aluminium-free cartons.

Incorporating these learnings, the company is now testing a new fibre-based barrier, in close collaboration with some of its customers. A first pilot batch of single serve packs featuring this industry-first material are currently on shelf for a commercial consumer test, with further technology validation scheduled later in 2022.

This initiative underscores Tetra Pak’s approach to design for recycling, where increasing the paper content is critical, and also supports end-user expectations. Based on recent global research, approximately 40% of consumers confirmed they would be more motivated to sort for recycling if packages were made entirely from paperboard and had no plastic or aluminium.

See also

Tetra Pak strives for zero waste with new strategic collaboration with Poka

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Tetra Pak research study reveals food safety-environment dilemma fostered by COVID-19 pandemic

Tetra Pak has unveiled findings from its global research study, in partnership with Ipsos, showing that food safety is a major issue for society. The same amount of respondents believe that COVID-19 is a “real threat.” At the same time, concern for the environment remains strikingly powerful, pointing towards a dilemma in the consumers’ minds as they try to balance the critical priorities of human existence through safe food and sustainability of the planet we live on.

Tetra Pak offers best-practice yoghurt lines to help customers capture growing demand

Tetra Pak has launched new best-practice lines for yoghurt products - a suite of expert services which support a wide variety of yoghurt innovations to address growing consumer demand. Leveraging more than 45 years of experience in processing and packaging solutions with deep knowledge of yoghurt, enabling Tetra Pak to offer support for designing processes that do not compromise on production economy or flexibility.

Tetra Pak research study reveals the convergence of environment and health is growing, and the Food and Beverage Industry is first to see this trend

Tetra Pak today reveals the findings from a global research study in partnership with Ipsos1 on the two most pressing consumer demands: the environment and health. They have historically been seen, and communicated, as separate areas: however they are increasingly converging, creating pivotal opportunities for food and beverage brands in how they market their products over the next 12 months.

Sustainable JNSD line pays off – Tetra Pak wins IFU 2019 Innovation Award

"In 2011, we realized that something could be done differently in the Juice-Nectar-Still Drink (JNSD) industry and decided to focus on how to make juice production more sustainable. To achieve that we needed to find innovative solutions which save energy and water", says Maria Norlin, Subcategory Manager JNSD & Other Beverages. On October 1st, this ground-breaking initiative was recognized by International Fruit and Vegetable juice Association.

Tetra Pak surpasses 500 billion FSC labelled package milestone​

Tetra Pak has now delivered more than 500 billion packages labelled with the Forest Stewardship Council logo globally, marking a significant milestone in the company’s journey to promote responsible sourcing and contributing to a low-carbon circular economy. Consumers looking for environmental logos when shopping is a growing trend, with over half of consumers saying they are always and often looking for environmental logos on the products they buy.

Tetra Pak becomes first carton packaging company to launch paper straws in Europe

Tetra Pak has announced that customers have started field testing its paper straws for beverage products in Europe. The move means Tetra Pak is the first carton packaging company to provide such straws for beverage cartons in the region. Made from FSC certified paper and recyclable with the rest of the package, the new paper straw will be available initially for two small size carton packages commonly used for dairy and beverage products for children.

Case study: Hellenic Dairies sees the benefits of integrated plant management

Greek dairy producer Hellenic Dairies is a longstanding Tetra Pak customer with seven filling lines and extensive processing equipment. The company holds a strong position in south-east Europe for liquid dairy products, cheese, yoghurt and juices, nectars and still drinks. In 2016, a major investment in their plant in Brasov, Romania, working closely with Tetra Pak and our strategic supplier Elettric80, resulted in the installation of a comprehensive range of end-of-line and warehousing equipment.

  • Innovation
  • English
  • Modified 12 Jul 2022
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