The new era is beginning in food packaging. Sustainability is the key word and the novel packaging solutions need to be both environmentally sound and safe. Very important is also the customer experience: what kind of story does the package tell about the product. How to recycle or reuse the package?
What is the hook in creating new fibre based packaging materials? Sustainable, biomass based packaging material saves energy, resources and reduces food loss. It also supports circular economy and improves brand value of manufacturer by novel packaging solutions.
Is there any need for new kind of packaging materials? It is important to create sustainable, natural fibre based functional food packaging. There is also a need to increase added value to side streams from food production which are used for bioenergy. These solutions respond to future trends, urbanisation, consumer awareness, food delivery and internet sale. Consumer is in the centre.
What is our approach? We investigate new solutions for improved eco deluxe food packaging, delivery, increased brand value, added value for primary industry (side streams) – in other words the holistic benefit for whole production chain from agriculture to brand owners. We utilize totally sustainable raw materials to create biodegradable products. The project is co-operation network: Luke, TAMK, Design Forum: combined excellence in biomaterial science, paper and paper board making and packaging design. Our stake holders are paper and paper board industry, packaging industry, food industry, retailers and food delivery industry. We are going to use fibres from oat and barley hull to make decorative paper for packaging.
What are the benefits of our packaging materials? Agropaper produced with 15-20% grain hull content (basis weight equal to pure pulp) saves wood and forests and thus, advances raw material efficiency and circular economy. Virgin wood fibres saved in this way can be used for other purposes. The price of oat hulk for bioenergy production is significantly lower than pulp price. Furthermore, products could be marketed in packaging in which side products have been efficiently utilised and thus, increase brand value! And it is also a vast biomass source: In year 2018 the food industry used 84 million kg oat in Finland, of which hull content is 23 – 30 %.
Stay tuned! Follow the newest results on our website. Soon you will witness the first printed paper bags made of beautiful paper with 15 % oat hull content. We have also made customer surveys and designed a totally new kind of material.
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