Innovation Zone ThePackHub -


Welcome to this week’s Innovation Zone snapshot from ThePackHub.

ThePackHub collates up to 20 new packaging innovations every week. We have selected four brand new initiatives that we hope will be on interest to you below.

NEW Sustainable Packaging Compendium 2020

Early Bird extended until 6pm GMT Monday 2nd December

Pre-order now and save £300

Following the success of ThePackHub’s first Sustainable Packaging Compendium, we are delighted to announce the introduction of the second instalment for 2020.

The in-depth review includes a unique and comprehensive summary of over 500 of the latest sustainable packaging innovations covering initiatives across compostable and biodegradable, biomaterial development, reusable and refillable, recycling initiatives, plastic replacement, carbon footprint reduction and more. Find out which brands, retailers and suppliers are bringing new sustainable innovations to market as well as those universities and research institutions working on the sustainable packaging of the future.  The Sustainable Packaging Compendium 2020 also includes a supplier contacts directory featuring a comprehensive list of names and contact details of the top suppliers in sustainable packaging.

You will receive a printed copy delivered free of charge plus a searchable PDF to download.

Pre-order today and save £300 – extended early bird ends today at 6pm GMT

Sustainable Packaging Compendium 2020 comprises more than 600 pages and is available on Friday 10th January.


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#1 New technique deodorises plastic to improve recycling

Recycling remains an important sustainability activity and methods to improve its efficacy continues across universities and research institutions around the world. A new process is in development that tackles the odour left in some plastic due for recycling. The smells absorbed by plastic from odorous substances can make it unsuitable for recycling. A development from Spain’s University of Alicante is able to remove the volatile organic compounds (VOCs) that are emitted by a plastic container’s contents and absorbed by its polymer matrix. Deodorizing is currently not possible via conventional washing and recycling methods. The patented process sees used plastic containers crushed into small particles and then chemically-washed with a special cleaning substance and then rinsed and dried. A ‘steam stripping’ process removes the odour via the technique of passing steam through a material. As that steam rises, it carries VOCs that were in the material with it. The resulting VOC-laden liquid can then be separated.  It is reported that several organisations are interested in commercialising the technology in due course. See also Partnership one step closer to restore post-consumer PP plastic to virgin-like resin.


More info in The Innovation Zone.

#2 Compostable cap for beauty sector launched

Catalan based wooden packaging experts Pujolasos specialises in the development and manufacture of caps for the perfume, cosmetics and spirits markets. The business has announced the launch of a natural and compostable cap for fragrance bottles. The patented solution made from natural materials is claimed to be the first cap of its type for the beauty sector and is set to help brands stand out on shelf as well as reinforce their environmental credentials. The Woork cap combines wood and cork and is also free from any plastic. No glue is used in its manufacture. The cap made with only natural materials is fully compostable.  The innovation features a wooden external part and a cork insert to create a junction between the cap and the perfume’s pump. The cap can be customized to adapt to the specific requirements of brand owners. See also Cosmetics pack ticks compostable, recyclable and reusable boxes

More info in The Innovation Zone.

#3 Paper folding design removes need for coffee cup lids

The UK market gets through around seven million disposable coffee cups with lids every day. The global situation is much bigger number of course. The impact on the environment is significant with the vast majority of the cups and lids not being recycled. An Ellen MacArthur Foundation supported initiative aims to have a difference. Unocup is made from that same plastic-lined paper material as conventional coffee cups. A folding paper-based design has been created to deliver a takeaway coffee cup option without the need for a plastic lid. The Unocup has been compared to a paper noodle box with the contents secured inside a paper chamber via folding flaps, which come together to create a spout at one end. A Kickstarter campaign has been launched to generate investment funds and further interest. See also All-paper spill-free cup removes plastic lid requirement and One piece coffee cup eliminates plastic lid.


More info in The Innovation Zone.

#4 Oxygen-free tubular pack reduces plastic and increases meat shelf-life

Danish Crown is a meat processing company and is Europe’s largest pork producer. The business has announced a new pack format that ticks boxes for the environment as well as for the extension of product shelf life. The new pack has been launched for the foodservice sector and is presented in a cylindrical tube container. The change from a tray format with lidding film is said to reduce the amount of plastic used by 85%.  The minced meat is packed without oxygen, which ensures that the shelf life is doubled extending from 7 days to two weeks. The meat will not appear quite as red in the new packaging as the oxygen used in the traditional trays helps the meat retain its red colour. As this is a foodservices product, it is anticipated that the professional trade will not see this as an issue.

More info in The Innovation Zone.

Please visit ThePackHub or call us on +44(0)118 963 9990 to find out more about the range of packaging innovation services we offer. We’ve delivered projects for a number of brand owner, retailer and packaging suppliers.

Until next time. Happy innovating.

ThePackHub Ltd 3 Redlands Court, Chapel Lane, Shotteswell, Banbury, OX17 1JB . Tel: 0118 963 9990 . Email us >