Categories: Packaging & inks

Table of contents

Categories: Packaging & inks

Table of contents

allnex ECOWISE™ CHOICE Plasticbottles PUD

Innovation stands as our best ally in the global challenge against plastic waste. Polyurethane dispersions (PUDs) have emerged as a game-changing technology, offering a pathway towards simpler, recyclable mono-material packaging.

PU dispersion not only meets environmental demands, but also upholds the performance and protection expected of traditional packaging. Discover how products from allnex ECOWISE™ CHOICE range can offer innovative sustainable packaging solutions with excellent barrier properties.

Flexible packaging solutions for you

allnex offer a broad portfolio of different technologies that enable you to develop a reduced, more sustainable packaging. Download the complete brochure here.

The scope of the plastic waste problem

400 million tones

of plastic are produced globally each year

~4 million t 

cf flexible packaging in EU alone

~ 1 million t 

considered to be non-recyclable

Plastic waste has evolved into a significant global concern in the 21st century. The magnitude of the challenge is clear, with an annual production of approximately 400 million tons of plastics worldwide. Europe alone produces roughly 4 million tons of flexible packaging, a quarter of which is deemed non-recyclable. A mere 18% of this plastic waste enters the recycling stream. This low recovery rate has led to a substantial accumulation of plastic waste.

The future of plastic waste management

The current growth rates in recycling are not promising. Projections suggest that even by 2050, we will only achieve a 46% global recycling rate. This rate falls short of the carbon-neutral targets set by numerous organizations and governments worldwide. With recycling rates reaching a plateau at around 80%, further improvement becomes a challenging endeavor.

Addressing the challenge

image caption of 4 steps to chaning plastic recycling, market awarness, legislation, circular economy , raw materials.
Figure 3: Aspects affecting plastic waste challenge

Increasing market awareness

One way to address plastic waste is by increasing consumer awareness. Heightened understanding of environmental issues has prompted end-users, brand owners, packaging designers and converters to adapt their products and practices. Non-governmental organizations (NGOs) also play a crucial role in educating consumers about the global impact of plastic waste.

Circular economy initiatives

Industry and non-governmental organisation (NGO) led initiatives have emerged to promote a circular economy and tackle plastic waste. The aim of initiatives such as Packaging Recovery Organizations (PRO) is to ensure the reuse, recycling and reduction of packaging waste by developing more sustainable packaging solutions. CEFLEX is a collaborative industry initiative that aims to redesign packaging to improve its recyclability and create a circular economy for plastic packaging.

Regulatory measures

Governments worldwide are stepping up to the challenge by implementing taxes and regulations that limit the production and distribution of certain plastic products. Companies must consider these legislative changes when designing and producing packaging materials. Specific regulatory measures such as the EU Green Deal, UK Packaging Tax, and Swiss VOC Tax each have a unique impact on plastic waste management and sustainable packaging design.

Raw material considerations

The availability and environmental impact of raw materials play a critical role in addressing the plastic waste issue. The ongoing global crisis has affected the supply of these materials. New sources of raw materials are being explored, such as bio-based, renewable and recycled materials. Bio-based raw materials present a more sustainable alternative but do not guarantee the recyclability of packaging. Additionally, the challenges of incorporating recycled waste streams into packaging materials lie in determining the appropriate use cases and whether downcycling is necessary.

Embracing circularity

Addressing the plastic waste challenge requires a commitment to circularity in the value chain, where materials are reused in the same applications rather than being downcycled. This approach includes strategies like Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR), which incentivizes the industry to adopt sustainable practices. The goal is to create an ecosystem where design, collection and recycling are integrated, leading to a more sustainable future.

allnex’s contribution

Maintaining the functional requirements of flexible packaging is a requirement for the packaging industry’s move towards a circular economy.

Figure 5: Functional requirements of flexible packaging

Currently, multi-substrate layers consisting of different types of plastics are used to provide mechanical resistance and barrier properties.

Figure 6: Examples of Multi-Substrate Structures

These layers need to preserve nutrition, taste, and consistency of the packaged products while keeping out water, sunlight (UV), and air pollutants. allnex technology offers innovative solutions for sustainable packaging materials while maintaining performance and protection properties. This contribution is crucial in the development of more eco-friendly and circular packaging solutions that align with consumer demands, retailers, and regulatory bodies.

Polyurethane dispersion for mono-material packaging

The latest developments within the ECOWISE™ CHOICE range by allnex stands as a beacon of sustainable packaging design. Polyurethane Dispersions (PUDs) offer a range of features and benefits.

Features

  • Very good adhesion to different types of plastics

  • Oxygen and moisture barrier properties

  • Flexible, crack-free film formation

  • Mechanical/scratch resistance

  • VOC-free due to unique production process w/o solvents

  • Transparency

  • High Tg and heat resistance

  • Film formation without residues

Benefits

  • Improve packaging barrier, replace non-recyclable layers

  • Reduction of the use of virgin raw materials

  • Protect printed and/or vacuum deposition layers

  • Good optical properties for transparent or printed films

  • Suitable for sterilisation and replacing PET

  • No delamination during vacuum sealing

  • Prevent migration into packed content

  • Do not contain SVHCs

allnex polyurethane dispersions (PUDs)

The concept of mono-material packaging is gaining ground in the pursuit of a circular economy.

Mono – Material packaging

Figure 7: Mono-material Packaging as Goal (example structure)

This design strategy involves creating packaging materials from a single type of material, vastly simplifying the recycling process. allnex’s PU Dispersions are instrumental in facilitating this shift. By replacing various barrier coatings found in multi-substrate packaging, PUDs enable the creation of mono-material packaging without sacrificing the functional requirements of flexible packaging.

DAOTAN® TW 6450/30WA

Eco-Friendly for Diverse Applications

Key Features

  • Excellent adhesion to plastic substrates
  • Moisture barrier

  • Excellent adhesion to plastics

Applications

  • Pharmaceutical and food packaging
  • Automotive OEM
  • Specialty coatings

Eco Advantage

  • Low/Zero VOC

Originally developed for automotive basecoats, our ECOWISE™ CHOICE CHOICE water-borne polyurethane dispersion DAOTAN TW 6450/30WA shows outstanding properties such as excellent elasticity, moisture barrier and very good adhesion to a broad range of plastics and metallized substrates, what makes it suitable for blister and packaging lamination.

DAOTAN® TW 7000/40WA

Enhancing Printing Inks and Packaging

Key Features

  • High water and chemical resistance
  • Oxygen barrier
  • Excellent adhesion to plastics

Applications

  • Packaging Coatings and Lamination
  • Ink(jet) binder
  • Plastic coatings for Automotive

Eco Advantage

  • Low/Zero VOC

  • Solvent free

Our ECOWISE™ CHOICE water-borne polyurethane dispersion DAOTAN TW 7000/40WA combines high shear resitance and flexibility. It provides besides excellent adhesion to plastics and metallized substrates also water and chemical resitance. Due to very good pigment compatibility it can be used as ink(jet) binder and its oxygen barrier property makes it suitable for packaging lamination and coatings.

Through innovative technologies like Polyurethane Dispersions (PUDs), allnex is driving a shift towards sustainable, efficient and recyclable packaging. We are committed to leading this change, aligning with the principles of the circular economy and offering solutions that meet the functional requirements of packaging.

Together, we can create a future where packaging is part of the solution, not the problem. Contact an allnex expert today to learn more.

FAQ

Let’s answer some of the most frequently asked questions about polyurethane dispersions and their role in sustainable packaging solutions: 

Polyurethane Dispersion is a class of polyurethane polymers often used in coatings, adhesives, and sealants due to their excellent adhesive properties and resistance to water and chemicals.
PUDs facilitate the creation of mono-material packaging, simplifying the recycling process and reducing waste, making them integral to sustainable packaging solutions.
Isocyanates are used in the production of PUDs, but the final product doesn’t necessarily contain free isocyanates. Regulatory standards apply.
Yes, PUDs can be used in isocyanate-free formulations. The formulation wouldn’t contain free isocyanates.
Due to their low concentration and high adhesion, PUDs don’t significantly impact the recycling of paper and plastic materials.
Yes, certain PU dispersions can create a moisture barrier on paper materials without negatively affecting the recycling process.
Mono-material packaging is made from a single type of material, simplifying recycling. PUDs enable its creation by serving as a versatile coating that adheres well to various substrates.
Yes, PU dispersion can be vacuum metallized or printed with multiple colors, offering design flexibility.
The PUDs mentioned are compliant for non-direct food contact. allnex is also working on developments for direct food contact.
DAOTAN® TW 6450/30WA and DAOTAN® TW 7000/40WA are water-based polyurethane dispersions developed by allnex. They can be used as coatings or adhesives in packaging, enabling the creation of mono-material packaging designs that are easier to recycle. They offer low to zero VOC and solvent free sustainable packaging solutions.

The ECOWISE™ CHOICE range signifies allnex’s sustainable products that minimize environmental impact while maintaining performance. They meet the most stringent global industry standards and ecolabels. The ECOWISE™ CHOICE portfolio is part of allnex’s commitment to delivering outstanding combined value for their customers, society and the environment. allnex aims to contribute to a more sustainable future …to Be ECOWISE™ together.

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The following article is from a webinar between Daria Samonova (Corporate communications manager, allnex), Andreas Jansen (International Project Manager for Adhesives & Lamination, allnex) and Tom Vanheertum (Marketing Manager, allnex). For the full presentation, please see the video above.