Innovation Zone ThePackHub -


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

ThePackHub collates up to 20 new packaging innovations every week for our Innovation Zone database.

We have selected four new initiatives for you today.

More information on our Innovation Zone packaging database –

Watch our 4-minute video update below.
ThePackHub collates up to 20 new packaging innovations every week for our Innovation Zone database. We have selected four new initiatives for you today.

More information on our Innovation Zone packaging database –

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Find out about ThePackHub’s nine new global packaging trends

– More than 550 market initiatives with visuals, analysis and comment across nine new packaging trends

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Thursday 8th April – 3 pm GMT

FREE one hour webinar. Catch up on the latest sustainable packaging innovation trends with this whistle-stop tour of the latest initiatives. We will cover many recent in-market and developmental examples to inspire you and keep you up to speed.

We will also be joined by Christophe Jordan, Managing Director – Translucent Papers of Arjowiggins who will be discussing their translucent functional barrier Sylvicta paper.

Hosted by Paul Jenkins, Managing Director and Barrington Pamplin, Technical Director of ThePackHub.

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Thursday 8th April – 3 pm GMT

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#1 Retortable, microwavable and recyclable stand up pouch is a first


The first retortable, microwavable and recyclable stand up pouch has been developed in a joint venture between Yorkshire-based packaging supplier JM Packaging, and FEI Foods, a contract packer based in South Wales. FEI Foods are reported to be Europe’s largest processor of ready to eat rice and grain pouch products. The mono-material pouch is made up of a dual laminate of PP (polypropylene) combined with retort-stable inks and gravure printing process. Taking two years, and with the two companies working closely together, they achieved their goals of functionality through production processing, being shelf-stable and continuing to have the same attributes that the consumer is used to. Additionally and importantly, it is fully recyclable, where collection facilities are available. Collection of PP is more advanced in many markets across Europe than in the UK presently due to more established curbside collection. However, some local authorities do collect PP curbside and supermarkets are starting to roll out instore PP collection points.

#2 Invisible imagery rendered visible with scanner for anti-counterfeiting labels

Two Russian universities in St Petersburg have developed a new anti-counterfeiting label with a difference. The ITMO University and St Petersburg Academic University have created a label that contains invisible imagery that can only be rendered noticeable with a system-specific scanner. The surface of the label has a lattice of tiny holes, some of which contain erbium, which is a rare earth element. This then creates a pattern that can be recorded by brand owners and checked using the scanner, and as the erbium has a distinct luminescence, it can be checked against the manufacturer’s records. For extra security, the wavelength, intensity and radiation can also be assessed. It is reported that the label stands up well to mechanical and chemical variations.

More info in The Innovation Zone.

#3 Pre-measured baby milk tabs improves on-the-go feeding

Danone’s baby milk arm has launched its Aptamil formula baby milk in pre-measured tabs for the UK market. Danone have entered into a partnership with Japanese food manufacturer Meiji who have a patented process for tab production. The tabs are being produced at Danone’s Wexford, Ireland formula milk processing plant. Following research, the business concluded that there was an opportunity for ‘on-the-go’ feeding. Greater convenience was also raised as a desire by mums. One tab is equivalent to one scoop of conventional powder, and it is claimed that the new tabs dissolve easily. Danone see the benefits for the tabs to be less mess during preparation and more accurate measurement. Although the new format uses more packaging than standard milk formula packs, a greater percentage is recyclable, and they are looking at other options including the use of mono materials to improve recycling. As the quality standards for baby formula products are critical, extensive testing was required to ensure that shelf life and product integrity are not compromised. Each pack contains 24 sachets with five unwrapped tabs per sachet. They expect to start distribution throughout Europe.


More info in The Innovation Zone.

#4 Home compostable film switch for leading US confectionery brand

Mars Wrigley is moving US packaging production of their Skittles product into a home compostable film by the end of 2021. In a collaboration with Bainbridge, Georgia-based Danimer Scientific, they will pack Skittles into Danimer’s Nodax polyhydroxyalkanoate (PHA) material. PHA is manufactured from oils such as soy and canola through a natural fermentation process and breaks down in both household and industrial compost settings. PHA is renewably sourced and leaves a minimal impact on the environment upon disposal. The two-year agreement will see Mars Wrigley evaluating the material with a view to scaling up across their other brands. Initially, Mars will target smaller single pack sizes as it is understood that these are more likely to be littered and less likely to be recycled. The move is part of Mars Wrigley’s corporate strategy called ‘Sustainable in a Generation’, its aim is to achieve 100% reusable, recyclable or compostable packs by 2025. They are also currently evaluating mono plastic and paper based alternatives.

More info in The Innovation Zone.

Watch our latest ThePackhub Expert Interview

Ian Beresford, Head of Marketing & Development of Essentra Tapes discusses their recent consumer research results that highlights some of packaging’s frustrations and delights as well as delving into the company’s range of tapes that Open, Close, Inform and Protect.

Packaging question of the week

What do you think retailers’ appetite for compostable packaging will be over the next 18 months? Vote and comment now. 

Last time, 30% thought we will see a lot more use of NFC and RFID for smart packaging applications over the next 12 months.

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.

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