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Plastic Packaging in the Pandemic

Wrap-up - 09/04/2020

Our round up of what's been happening in the world of flexible packaging. 

Plastic packaging … 

Hero or villain in the coronavirus era?

Is plastic in food packaging a hero or a villain during the coronavirus crisis? Some argue it's vital for protecting food and extending shelf life. Others claim the pandemic highlights that disposable plastic is unsustainable and a carrier of harmful bacteria.

The topic is explored this week by Food Navigator in conversation with Barry Turner, Director of Plastics and Flexible Packaging at the British Plastics Federation, and Sian Sutherland, founder of A Plastic Planet.

Appreciate it, don't love or hate it

In response to the "Hero or Villain" article, Jim Downham, CEO of PAC Packaging Consortium, has said: "Packaging, appreciate it, don't love or hate it". On LinkedIn, he expressed the view: "The primary role of food packaging is to protect both consumers and products."

One comment it provoked was: "Plastic certainly has its place. Where would we be today during this global pandemic, without it?"

Reduce, recycle, reuse

In our series "Lifting the Lid on Plastic", we have explored the role of the material in food packaging today.  The information we present reveals why plastic should be valued with an emphasis on plastic reduction, recycling, and reuse.

You can read the articles here:

Part 1 - How the "greatest thing since sliced bread” became toast.
Part 2 - Food for thought on tackling food waste.
Part 3 - Any colour as long as it’s not black.    

Great inroads have already been made in achieving circularity for plastics. And, while some of the progress may have been paused or even reversed due to meeting the demands of the coronavirus crisis, momentum will resume in due course.

At KM, we value the benefits, versatility, and functionality of plastic, and focus on choosing the best material for our customer’s purpose.

A circular economy for flexible packaging

Flexible packaging is very light and resource-efficient, but recyclability “is critical”. In a video interview published by CEFLEX, Jean-Paul Duquet, of Flexible Packaging Europe, talks about flexible packaging and the key ingredients to achieve “mission circular”.

Breaking it down ...

  • Mutant Ninja Enzyme … Scientists create mutant enzyme that recycles plastic bottles in hours.
  • Chemical Reaction … The unique approach to chemical recycling from a Netherland’s start-up.

News from the aisles and in the factories

  • Cash Bonus … Morrisons to treble staff bonuses in recognition of “huge effort”.
  • Feeding the Nation … recognising the people who keep the food coming.

We’re clapping for all retail and food manufacturing employees during these times as well as all our colleagues in the packaging supply chain.


Also this week

And to wrap up ...

To keep you informed during the Easter break:

  • Read about … the next 5-10 years of the food manufacturing industry, focusing on technical and process. 
  • Listen to … Radio 4’s “Costing the Earth - Fantastic Plastic”.

From the KM team … Stay Safe, Keep up the Good Work, Help Others.


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Striking oil with plastic

In the Wrap-Up this week ... Striking oil with plastic. UK-wide recycling survey. Trays in the spotlight. Covid-resistant food trays. Talking about plastics in a wasteful society. And more …

Plastic is flying off the shelves

In the Wrap-Up this week ... Plastic is flying off the shelves. Why compostable packaging is crucial for food waste recycling. Clearing the coast of plastic waste. UK-wide interactive recycling map. Meet John Shipley, our international "champion". And more …

Compostable packaging boost for food waste recycling aims

Compostable packaging is crucial if food waste recycling is to be increased, according to a new report based on responses from experts across Europe.

The report, published by environmental consultancy Ricardo Energy, is being circulated to encourage the Government to support compostable packaging to help meet its food waste recycling objectives and reduce plastic contamination in organic waste streams.

Recycling Roadmap for Flexible Packaging

In this week's wrap-up … FLEXIBLE PACKAGING and a recycling roadmap, viability of mechanically recycling, new circular economy consortium, and the future of sustainability. Survey reveals the best and worst supermarkets. Updates from the tray sealing world. Our views and news. And more …

KM Packaging Launches Advanced Lidding Solution KPeel PLUS+
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