Plastic is increasing its volume compared to other packaging materials such as glass, paper and metal. Green advantages and new design options are the main reasons.It is extremely energy demanding to use glass for packaging and lids and the CO2 emissions from this phase of the life cycle is 2.5 times higher than for that of plastic. Moreover, the lower weight and easier stacking of plastic containers entails massive costs and CO2 reductions through transport.
“Packaging accounts for only 10% of a product’s total CO2 emission, but it is still our ambition to contribute in reaching the European Commission’s goal of a 20% reduction in greenhouse gases before 2020. When our customers convert their packaging from glass to plastic we take a step towards reaching that goal,” says Product Design Manager Torben Noer from leading packaging manufacturer Superfos. However, the green advantages are not the only reason to convert to plastic. Torben Noer explains: “More and more new products are launched in plastic packaging, and there is a good reason for that. Plastic is light weight, very hygienic and very resistant. It also has a very flexible reaction to impacts, which means low risk of breakage. At the same time, it has a large degree of design possibilities, from transparent to all the colours of the rainbow, and that makes it very attractive to work with.”
One company that has replaced metal with plastic is the French Un Air d’Ici who produces the famous Ice Fruits. The switch has resulted in weight reductions of more than 30 percent and a more efficient use of their storage capacity. Superfos’ new Paintainer is also a good example of the advantages of using plastic compared to metal. Plastic packaging for paint products provides huge performance advantages compared to metal including increased flexibility, user-friendly open and closure systems, better stacking ability, and no risk of dents or rust-contamination.
30% percent weight reduction
The key advantages of plastic
• Liquid tight
• Light weight
• Easy opening and re-closing
• Microwave, dishwasher and freezer safe
• High product safety
• High oxygen barriers
• Razor sharp decoration
• Suitable for hot filling and use of autoclaving
• Possibilities for shaping
• No noise on filling lines
• Stacking and transport security