Consumer goods company Henkel AG is aiming to increase the regranulated resin content of its flexible packaging materials for laundry detergents, as part of a strategic goal to become three times more efficient by 2030.
Henkel has turned to longtime partner Mondi Group of Vienna to find a solution for incorporating more of its scrap plastic into a highly functional, aesthetically pleasing, flexible laminate packaging material.
The German company has already begun selling its Megaperls washing powder in the resulting flexible package — called a “quadro seal bag” — that consists of an oriented polypropylene/polyethylene laminate.
At present, 30 percent of the package's PE layer consists of industrial waste reclaimed from Mondi's factory in Halle, Germany.
“That means the overall package structure contains approximately 10 percent regrind material,” Henkel said in an April 17 statement.
Henkel described this as “significant achievement for a thin, flexible OPP/PE laminate,” considering the package requirements which include a shiny white exterior and an easy-peel opening with no compromise in overall functionality.
“Our aim is to achieve 50 percent level of regranulate in the full structure,” says Timo Müller, Mondi's key account manager for Henkel.
According to Müller, Mondi's resin reclamation technology in Halle has contributed immensely to the project.
The technology, he said, allows for the collection and separation of not only transparent and white materials, but also those that do not contain a slip agent.
“This helps to enable the use of regrind in the laminate without negatively impacting its material specifications and product mechanical properties,” according to Müller.
“We are working closely with our OPP film supplier,” he added, “to allow us to use oriented polypropylene with regranulated content, thereby enabling us to increase the percentage of reclaimed material in the entire structure.”