Sealed Air develops designed-for-recycling shrink packaging

Sealed Air has developed a market leading designed-for-recycling shrink packaging solution to support an increasing number of food companies moving to a circular economy.

The new Cryovac brand Designed-for-Recycling Standard Presentation Shrink Bag and Shrinkable Rollstock are the world’s first RIC4 coded heat-sealable food packaging materials, meaning they are 100% recyclable* to help food processors and retailers further improve sustainability.

Enhanced efficiencies and environmental performance can also be realised through the range’s thinner, lighter EVOH barrier and excellent mechanical resistance. These features can help to reduce packaging material usage and overall carbon footprint by up to 60%, compared to widely used thermoforming packaging systems.

Ed Roberts, global sustainability leader at Sealed Air, commented: “The Designed-for-Recycling Standard Presentation Shrink Bag and Shrinkable Rollstock have been designed to offer a total packaging approach to improving sustainability. The recyclability is complemented by high shrink, abuse resistance and barrier properties to reduce food waste, while also lowering sealing temperatures and energy usage during packaging.”

The new Designed-for-Recycling Standard Presentation Shrink Bag and Shrinkable Rollstock have been tested in accordance with protocols set-out by the Association of Plastics Recyclers (APR) and Plastics Recyclers Europe (PRE), with the 100% recyclability certified by Institut Cyclos-HTP.

Roberts added: “As well as meeting growing demands for increased sustainability, the Designed-for-Recycling packaging also satisfies other important consumer requirements. The sealed packs are easy opening, glossy with reduced haze and avoid discoloration of meats. Together, these performance properties help drive sales, which is another step towards less food waste and better resourcefulness.”

Operators can run the Standard Presentation Shrink Bags with a wide variety of heat-sealing equipment including Cryovac brand VR and VS vacuum lines, while the Shrinkable Rollstock is compatible with Horizontal Form Fill Seal technology and a range of other loaders.

Roberts concluded: “To build a circular economy, we need materials and processes that take a holistic view of sustainability. This approach is at the core of the new Designed-for-Recycling packaging, with advances in recyclability achieved as part of a solution delivering improved efficiencies and lower waste throughout the food supply chain, beyond the end-of-packaging-life stage.”


*The degree of recyclability of the final package depends on the specific product configuration or components intended for recycling and the scope and availability of appropriate local recycling facilities.

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