Plastics News reporter Dan Hockensmith compiled these news items at Pack Expo, held Oct. 31 to Nov. 3 in Chicago.
Toray's TreaTear, Ecodear on display
Ecodear thin, biaxially oriented films based on polylactic acid were among stars of the show at Toray Plastics America Inc.'s booth. The North Kingston, R.I., extruder, a unit of Tokyo's Toray Industries Inc., designed Ecodear for food applications with films including metalized, heat-sealable versions for moisture and oxygen barriers and a clear film for use as an inner seal or a print web.
Toray also demonstrated its Toryfan PC3 metalized polypropylene film for high-barrier, cold-seal and buried-barrier web applications. Toray said PC3 delivers twice the moisture barrier and three times the oxygen barrier of earlier versions of Torayfan OPP films for metalized PET and foil replacement in tri-laminations.
Pack Expo converters and consumer-product makers were introduced to Toray's new Torayfan TreaTear PP sealant films, which the company said do not require laser scoring or perforations to make a clean, straight tear wherever it is needed on a pouch.
TreaTear DR2 film is for return pouches that require 100 percent ink coverage; DR22 is for pouches that require high clarity, such as a window to enable viewing of inside contents. The films are for products including seafood, chicken, prepared entrees, pet food and military MREs.
Ampac introduces new Apex film line
Film and sheet maker Ampac Packaging LLC of Cincinnati touted its laminate Apex 3953 AM sealant films. Apex, which is free of bisphenol A, contains an antimicrobial additive for applications where hermetic seals or sealing to a fitment are required.
The company also showed its E-Z Zip reclosable zipper technology on roll stock engineered for horizontal form-fill-seal pouch applications on KHS packaging machines. E-Z Zip features a pull-tab opening that allows the user to pull away a thin tear strip to access the reclosable zipper. The closure is entirely on one side of the package, allowing product to fill through the unsealed pouch opening as if there were no zipper in place.
Huhtamaki machine runs plastic, paper
Huhtamaki Inc., a De Soto, Kan., subsidiary of Finland's HuhtamÃ¤ki Oyj, featured a new package-forming machine that can run plastic or paperboard.
The FM-4000 can form round and non-round containers in sizes from single-serve to 64 ounces. The machine is engineered for a single operator and to have only a 7-foot by 9-foot footprint, much smaller than earlier machinery.
SmartCycle products use recycled bottles
KlÃ¶ckner Pentaplast of America Inc. displayed several new products at the Chicago show, including two thermoformable PET films: SmartCycle TH-ES135R for use in radio frequency sealing; and SmartCycle TH-ES150K, which is heat-sealable to water-based, adhesive-coated card stock. Both films are manufactured from recycled plastic bottles, with 35-50 percent post-consumer content.
Gordonsville, Va.-based KlÃ¶ckner announced that its line of bio-based films has been extended to include amorphous PET film for all-plastic box, food and thermoformed packaging applications. The firm claims its Pentaclear, Pentaform and Pentafood rigid TerraPET films provide cosmetic and performance characteristics similar to standard amorphous PET film, while allowing customers to replace petroleum-based material with up to 30 percent sugar cane-based material.
The company also featured films made from high-amylose starch, for clients interested in compostable, thermoformed thermoplastic starch trays, shelf-ready displays and insert trays in secondary packaging.
The company's Pentpharm kpVantage polyester films for pharmaceutical packaging also were displayed. According to the company, the films can be used as mono films for medicines requiring a low moisture barrier or they can be integrated into barrier structures for products that require more protection.
Sealed Air Corp. touts foam based on plants
Sealed Air Corp. brought its Instapak RC45 plant-based foam to the show. Compatible with the Saddle Brook, N.J., company's Instapak packaging machinery, RC45 is the first renewable-content product added to the existing 15-product Instapak foam line.
Also on display was Sealed Air's Cryovac trap-printed film, which the company said can make finished packages of 3-24 ounces for sauces, glazes and gravies to accompany meal kits or meats. The film is created from multilayer coextruded films that have been laminated with print between the layers. A new Cryovac 360 shrink-sleeve label offers a five-layer, coextruded label film that the firm said combines the benefits of PET glycol and oriented polystyrene to improve the area yield over traditional 50-micron films by as much as 25 percent.
Sealed Air officials said the company's signature Bubble Wrap now offers recycled-grade cushioning with a minimum of 50 percent pre-consumer recycled content, which Sealed Air claims is the highest recycled-content minimum for air cellular cushioning on the market.
3M Co. shows off Scotch handle tape
3M Co. of St. Paul, Minn., highlighted its Scotch-brand Easy Open Carry Handle Tape 8643, an integrated handle that functions as part of shrink-wrapped beverage packaging.
Handles are applied to plastic film using a Straub Design Co. integrated tape handle machine. The 8643 handle tape is reinforced with continuous polypropylene monofilaments in the backing, providing a straight, zipper-like easy-open feature.
The 8643 handle tape recently was chosen as a finalist in the inaugural InBev Innovation Awards at InterBev 2010 in Orlando, Fla.