May 2, 2023

Chemical company, pasta maker partner to produce sustainable packaging

Saudi chemical manufacturing company SABIC has teamed up with Italia pasta maker Garofalo to produce a new, sustainable pasta packaging.

The packaging, made by GT Polifilm and Polivouga using SABIC’s certified circular polypropylene (PP), is derived from advanced recycling and converted into a biaxially oriented polypropylene (BOPP) film. The application is the first pasta mono-PP packaging material in the market containing 30% of post-consumer recycled (PCR) content.

Garofalo has introduced a novel packaging made by GT Polifilm and Polivouga using SABIC’s certified circular polypropylene (PP). Photos: SABIC

Garofalo introduced the first pasta bags made from the new packaging to Italian stores in March.

The PCR content in the bags is based on post-consumer used plastics, which is turned into pyrolysis oil. At SABIC, the oil is used in the production of new polymers with the same specifications as virgin plastics from conventional feedstock.

Polivouga, a Portuguese manufacturer of flexible films for packaging products, uses a SABIC PP 525PC grade from SABIC’s TRUCIRCLE portfolio of certified circular polymers to produce the basic BOPP film for the packaging. GT Polifilm, a specialist in the production of flexible polypropylene products for automated packaging in the food industry, adds a cast PP film to the BOPP film to create a mono-material structure, which is then converted to tailor-made pasta bags. Once used, the mono-PP bags can be recycled again.

“For such solutions to work in the long-term, the partners in the material value chain must closely collaborate,” Abdullah Al-Otaibi, general manager, ETP & Market Solutions at SABIC, said in a news release. “With our TRUCIRCLE program, we are pushing for innovative business models to transform our industry from a linear to a circular one and help prevent the valuable material of end-of-life plastic applications from being wasted. Within a year, this remarkable joint project has shown what can be achieved to make this vision come true if all players work together to maximize post-consumer plastic recycling and sustainability.”

SABIC’s circular materials are produced using a mass balance accounting scheme according to the International Sustainability & Carbon Certification PLUS program, which follows a set of traceability rules for tracking the material across supply chains from the feedstock to the final application.

“At Garofalo, we are fully committed to the quality and environmental compatibility of our products,” said Sergio De Gennaro, quality assurance manager, Pastificio Lucio Garofalo S.p.A. “Of course, this innovative new recycled pasta packaging is just one example of our sustainable initiatives, but marks an important step forward. It shows how food manufacturers and packaging suppliers are working together to bring about much needed change.

“As a packaging product that is both made with recycled content and fully recyclable, it also meets with a better consumer appeal.”

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