American Packaging Corporation, Bostik and Charter Next Generation Create APR-Approved, PE Cold Seal Film Structure with How2Recycle® Store Drop-off Label Approval
Flexible film converter American Packaging Corporation, adhesive supplier Bostik, Inc. and PE film producer Charter Next Generation (CNG) successfully manufactured a PE cold seal film that passed the Association of Plastic Recyclers (APR)’s Critical Guidance Testing for PE Film and Plastic Packaging and earned How2Recycle® Store Drop-off label approval. Through this collaboration, the three companies were able to brand owner packaging meets standards for recyclability, does not negatively impact the recycling stream and is easy for consumers to recycle.
This PE cold seal film development occurred as a result of How2Recycle®’s announcement that the extent to which cold seal adhesives influence the recycling stream was unclear. The entity requested that experts test materials via APR protocol and pass the test within a year of making the announcement. If unable to do so, all existing PE cold seal packaging that once had received Store Drop-off recycling status would be nullified; Store Drop-off labels would need to be removed from that packaging, and brand owners would be unable to obtain Store Drop-off certification on any new cold seal packaging until testing was completed.
Given PE cold seal packaging’s popularity in the market, the three companies recognized the urgent need to work together to determine cold seals’ recycling stream impact and aid in brand owner revenue potential.
Additionally, as the APR does not have a test protocol to test individual coatings, they needed to collaborate to create a cold seal film structure similar to what was being used in the market. The three companies also understood the importance in working together to meet the due date, prevent nullification and eliminate future brand owner issues in obtaining the certification.
To do so, American Packaging Corporation, Bostik and CNG developed a set of criteria for the film grade, cold seal adhesive grade and cold seal coat weight disposition in order to submit a structure that would be most likely to pass the APR’s stringent testing criteria. The structure was intentionally designed to be difficult to pass the test in order to increase the possibility that other structures would be able to as well. The companies then submitted a Control Film, which was uncoated PE film, and an Innovation Film, which was the cold seal-coated PE film, to Plastics Forming Enterprises, an APR-approved test lab to conduct the testing based on APR protocol. This case study provides more information into how the criteria was determined and what was submitted for testing. The results showed that the Innovation Film was not detrimental to the recycling process per the APR’s protocol.
“Without this cross-vertical collaboration, brand owners would be at risk for losing Store Drop-off eligibility for their packaging,” said Courtney McLachlan, Bostik’s Flexible Packaging Market Manager – North America. “We greatly appreciated the opportunity to come together to help drive the market to more sustainable solutions.”
Jeff Travis, American Packaging Corporation’s Manager of Innovation and Sustainability, added, “American Packaging is grateful to have strong, collaborative partnerships with Bostik, CNG and our collective customers, who worked together to drive a sustainable solution, along with the evidentiary data proving the technologies effectiveness and environmental compliance.”
Furthering that sentiment, Jeff Hopp, Director – Food Marketing at CNG noted, “The collaboration allowed each company to develop expertise in recyclable PE structures for cold seal applications, therefore providing brand owners with options to expand their recyclable product lines.”
Learn more by reading the case study here, or contact the companies directly:
How2Recycle® is a trademark of Green Blue Institute DBA GreenBlue and used with permission.
Bostik, the adhesive solutions division of Arkema, is a global player in specialty adhesives for the construction, consumer, and industrial markets which develops innovative and multifunctional sealing and bonding solutions that have been shaping our daily lives for over 130 years. With annual sales of 2.9 billion euros in 2022, a presence in more than 40 countries, and 7,000 employees, Bostik is committed to meeting the major ecological, energy and technological challenges through its innovations. It is focused on continuous improvement and operational excellence to meet the expectations of its customers and partners. www.bostik.com
Building on its unique set of expertise in materials science, Arkema offers a portfolio of first-class technologies to address ever-growing demand for new and sustainable materials. With the ambition to become in 2024 a pure player in Specialty Materials, the Group is structured into 3 complementary, resilient and highly innovative segments dedicated to Specialty Materials - Adhesive Solutions, Advanced Materials, and Coating Solutions - accounting for some 91% of Group sales in 2022, and a well-positioned and competitive Intermediates segment. Arkema offers cutting-edge technological solutions to meet the challenges of, among other things, new energies, access to water, recycling, urbanization and mobility, and fosters a permanent dialogue with all its stakeholders. The Group reported sales of around €11.5 billion ($12.1 billion USD) in 2022, and operates in some 55 countries with 21,100 employees worldwide.
About American Packaging Corporation
Founded in 1902, American Packaging Corporation is a recognized leader in the flexible packaging industry. Independently owned, APC is committed to innovation, sustainability and customer delight from a talented family of packaging professionals. Today, APC operates six Centers of Excellence in the United States and employs approximately 1,200 talented, motivated professionals, including nationwide sales representatives and field technical support. For more information, please visit americanpackaging.com.
About Charter Next Generation (CNG)
CNG is North America’s leading independent producer of high-performance specialty films and a key supplier of highly-engineering solutions used in food and medical packaging and consumer and industrial markets. Known for sustainable, innovative and world-class manufacturing capabilities, the company’s quality expertise are unsurpassed. Its sustainability-first mindset and steady pursuit of excellence make CNG an ideal partner to help brand owners reach their long-term sustainability goals. Visit cnginc.com or follow @charternextgeneration on Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn to learn more.