Innovation Zone

ThePackHub Innovation Zone Snapshot

by Paul Jenkins, Managing Director of ThePackHub.
I’m pleased to share with you an Innovation Zone snapshot update, which provides a glimpse into the emerging trends on ThePackHub’s global packaging innovation platform.

We have a brand new report out soon! Check out Refill & Reuse Compendium Vol 3

The Innovation Zone database platform is a reliable destination for keeping up-to-date with the latest global packaging initiatives. With a comprehensive collection of packaging innovations worldwide (8,106 as of this morning), you can stay informed about the latest developments and advancements in packaging.

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From Plastic to Paper: The Rising Tide of Paperisation

This week, we’re taking a deep dive into another leading packaging trend in terms of the phenomenon of ‘paperisation’. We continue to track many examples of products switching from plastic to paper-based solutions with ThePackHub’s Innovation Zone platform seeing 18% of the innovations focusing on paperisation over the last three months. It’s one of our four major sustainable packaging trends that we have identified.

As well as many new paperisation innovations (more on them below), we’ve also checked recent research and report findings to support this growth claim. For example, a recent survey by Two Sides Europe, ‘Trend Tracker Survey 2023’, showed that 76% of respondents view paper-based packaging as home compostable, while 55% perceive it as more environmentally friendly.

More analysis by Two Sides Europe shows that European consumers have strong preferences for sustainability in their paper product choices, with 67% prioritizing items from sustainably managed forests and 37% paying attention to forestry certification labels like Love Paper. Additionally, 67% advocate for recycled paper usage, while 41% are inclined to avoid retailers not reducing single-use, non-recyclable packaging. Notably, the preference for printed magazines among European consumers has risen to 51% from 35%.

Here are five new paperisation packaging initiatives you should know about recently posted to the Innovation Zone.
1. Drewsen Spezialpapiere, based in Lachendorf, Germany, has introduced PROSEAL Heat Sealable Paper, tackling plastic reduction in packaging for dry and non-food items. With a water-based coating for seamless sealing, it’s reported as ideal for various applications, including food and non-food packaging. Certified for food contact and recyclable, it offers optional FSC or PEFC certifications. Compatible with flexo and gravure printing, it ensures smooth processing for manufacturers.

2. Spiro Pack is a paper void fill replacing polystyrene. Its spiral tissue design offers a unique alternative to traditional crinkle fill and packing peanuts. Occupying 80% less space than crinkle shred, it simplifies packing and cleanup. Spiro Pack expands to ten times its size, reducing handling and staff time. Comparative studies reveal its reported superiority, filling 1,200% more boxes than Crinkle Cut. This efficiency yields significant cost savings. It is customizable for colour and printing options.

3. UK retailer Marks & Spencer has slashed plastic use by 79% in their Café sandwiches with new recyclable paper and FSC board packaging, cutting 4.5 million units of plastic. Aligned with their Plan A to reduce 1 billion plastic units by 2027, aiming for net zero by 2040. This follows the removal of 75 million plastic units ahead of target in 2023/24.

4. Germany’s Monta has introduced a new paper tape in its Greenline range, promoting recyclable packaging. Made at Monta’s German plant, it features a natural rubber adhesive and chlorine-free bleached pulp carrier from sustainable forestry. It is designed to seal cardboard boxes and mail pouches and offers strong adhesion and moisture resistance up to 60°C. Silicone-free and compatible with water-based ink for printing, it comes in brown (843) and white (852) variants. A plastic-free option, it can be recycled with cartons, targeting organic producers and e-commerce.

5. Smurfit Kappa has introduced a packaging solution for Biobest, replacing EPS packs for transporting live bumblebees with AquaStop paper and hexacomb fitments. Passing outdoor durability tests for 6-8 weeks ensures bee safety for pollination. Aligned with Biobest’s sustainability commitment, Smurfit Kappa emphasizes AquaStop’s recyclability as a Styrofoam alternative and their broader range of paper-based solutions for regulatory compliance.

We have seen a slight slowing down of the paperisation trend from its peak around two or three years ago. Operators are acknowledging (again) the inexpensive benefits of plastic to reduce waste and carbon footprint in certain applications.

Brand new Compendium Volume 3
Save – now taking early bird orders

We are delighted to announce ThePackHub’s Refillable & Reusable Packaging Compendium Volume 3, your essential guide to navigating the booming refillable and reusable packaging sector. Authored by ThePackHub’s Refill & Reuse Specialist, Wayne Barron, this comprehensive 200-page report offers an in-depth analysis of global trends, showcasing over 150 innovative reuse solutions across a variety of consumer categories.

Discover the leading brands, retailers, and suppliers pioneering in this space and gain insights to grow in this rapidly growing market. Featuring exclusive interviews with ten industry experts and detailed case studies on Dizzie’s successful prefill business model and the Refill Coalition’s Aldi trial, this report is an invaluable resource for anyone looking to make an impact in the reusable packaging landscape.

Find out more and save here.

Everything you need to know about the latest stand-out packaging patents!

Researched and analysed by ThePackHub’s Katie Roselaar.

More information coming soon.

Expert Interview
Alexander Sobolenko – Releaf Paper

Releaf Paper were one of six winners of ThePackHub’s inaugural Packaging Startup Awards.

Releaf Paper is the world’s first producer of pulp and paper made from green waste. They use fibres of fallen leaves to produce materials for packaging manufacturing. Releaf Paper is produced from raw materials collected by public utilities within urban areas. As a result, they are not only disposing of waste but processing it into incredibly sustainable paper and materials for packaging manufacturing.

We speak to CEO Alexander Sobolenko about their initiative in this recent interview.

Leading brand owners, retailers, and packaging suppliers trust the Innovation Zone to stay ahead with the latest packaging innovations. Contact us to learn how membership can enhance your company’s understanding.
Until next time. Happy innovating!
ThePackHub Ltd Albany House, 14 Shute End, Wokingham, Berks, RG40 1BJ. Tel: 0118 963 9990 . Email us >