Advanced resin reclamation technology at Mondi’s consumer packaging plant in Halle, Germany, enables efficient use of scrap plastic in Henkel’s Megaperls laundry detergent packaging.
Reduce environmental footprint and create more value for consumers. Increase efficiency five to six percent per year. Become three times more efficient by 2030.
This ambitious goal – dubbed ‘Factor 3’ – is what environmentally-minded consumer goods company Henkel – Mondi’s long-time partner – aims to accomplish.
To achieve their goal, Henkel turned to Mondi for help with a solution to incorporate more scrap plastic into a highly functional, aesthetically pleasing, flexible laminate packaging material.
The resulting flexible packaging – called the ‘quadro seal bag’ – is now used for Henkel’s Megaperls washing powder.
Thirty percent of the new OPP/PE laminate package’s PE layer consists of industrial waste reclaimed from Mondi’s consumer packaging plant in Halle, Germany. This means the overall package structure contains approximately 10% regrind material.
Given the technical challenges involved, both Henkel and Mondi recognise this innovation as an important initial step in helping to ensure that such consumer packaging meets the environmental needs of a more circular economy.
With its shiny white exterior, easy-peel opening, and no compromise in overall functionality, the new Megaperls packaging is already a significant achievement for a thin, flexible OPP/PE laminate.
And Henkel and Mondi have even more ambitious goals. "Our aim is to achieve a 50% level of regranulate in the full structure," said Timo Müller, Mondi's Key Account Manager for Henkel.
The innovative packaging is made possible by the advanced resin reclamation technology at Mondi’s Halle plant, which allows Mondi to collect and separate not only transparent and white materials, but also those that do not contain a slip agent.
This capability enables the use of regrind in the laminate without negative impact to material specifications and product mechanical properties, according to Müller.
Our aim is to achieve a 50% level of regranulate in the full structure.
“We are working closely with our OPP film supplier to allow us to use oriented polypropylene with regranulated content, thereby enabling us to increase the percentage of reclaimed material in the entire structure,” he added.
The resulting packaging material offers clear environmental benefits: Virgin resins are replaced with regrind material and the product’s end-of-life recycling process is made simple, as the OPP/PE laminate structure consists entirely of polyolefin materials.
“Our packaging developers work constantly to design smart packaging that uses the least amount of material possible, is recyclable, and incorporates more recycled material,” said Dr. Thorsten Leopold, Head of International Packaging Development Home Care, Henkel.
“Mondi provides us with valuable technological expertise to implement a more sustainable solution for some of our laundry and home care product packaging,” he added.
The two partners look forward to significantly boosting the percentage of reclaimed content in more Henkel packaging to contribute further to Henkel’s ambitious Factor 3 sustainability goal.
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