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Latest News Wrap-Up /

Reflections on the Impact of Brexit

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

Reflections on Brexit

As the UK leaves the European Union, Packaging Europe’s Brand Director Tim Sykes has shared his personal and professional reflections including concerns about “creating barriers between the deeply integrated European and British markets”.

KM Packaging’s Commercial Director, Graham Holding, expresses our commitment to our European colleagues:

“With the UK leaving the European Union today I would like to take this opportunity to reaffirm to all our EU based suppliers and customers our commitment to working with them throughout 2020 and beyond. Politicians on all sides may seek to make trade between our businesses and nations more difficult in the future but I remain confident in the ability of the KM team, our suppliers and customers to find ways to overcome any challenges so that our relationships will continue to flourish throughout the decade ahead.”

#ValuePlastic - Videos to educate the public about plastic

The British Plastics Federation (BPF) has released two videos to assist public understanding of the role of plastic in society and the best ways to prevent plastic waste.

One video outlines how the carbon impact of plastic is relatively low when compared to alternatives. The second explains how changes to the UK’s recycling collection system may help reduce existing confusion over what should be put in the recycling bin.

To watch click on links below: 

Is Plastic Sustainable? 

Improving Plastic Recycling in the UK

The pressure's on to extend your shelf-life with HPP

High-pressure processing (HPP) is a powerful method of extending the shelf life of packaged food. We have created an introduction to HPP, how it works, and why the right packaging is important in the process.

Read the full article here.

To Veganuary – and beyond! 

January may be over but our appetite for vegan food continues. Since 2014 Veganuary has inspired and supported more than half a million people in 178 countries to try vegan for January and beyond. UK supermarkets and plant-based protein food manufacturers have launched an appetising array of new products this month, for example, Co-op’s GRO range and Asda’s Plant-Based range. 

If you’re looking for lidding films that are vegan to compliment your product, KM Packaging can supply any time of year, not just in January. 

To find out more click here

New recycling labelling rules to provide clarity

New labelling rules will give consumers greater clarity on the recyclability of packaging. The new rules from OPRL move the majority of packaging into a binary labelling system of “Recycle” or “Don’t Recycle”.

The move will drive more rapid switching into sustainable packaging ahead of Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) reforms as new labels are applied over the next three years.

Plastic waste will no longer be dumped on developing countries

Plastic waste will no longer be exported from the UK to developing countries, under new legislation. The Environment Bill will stop the exports and, in turn, help boost the UK’s domestic recycling system.

The Bill is part of the Government’s commitments to the environment which also include the introduction of taxation for manufacturers of plastic packaging which uses insufficient Post-Consumer Recycled (PCR) content. 

Also see our blog on “Taxing Matter of Recycled Plastic”.

The circular economy – a voyage of discovery

What if we created a system that reuses resources, rather than using them up? What if the model were not linear, but circular? These are questions that led to Dame Ellen MacArthur setting up her Foundation to accelerate the transition to a circular economy.

Ellen, who became the fastest solo sailor to circumnavigate the globe, has talked to Brunswick about how her voyage led to rethinking about the global economic system.

You can read more and download the article in full.

Compostable alternatives – support and education

A group of MPs and academics this week lent their support to ambitious targets for moving away from conventional plastics towards compostable alternatives. However, Packaging Automation has pointed out there is still much to do to educate everyone about how to handle these materials.

News from the aisles …

Tesco has announced it will replace plastic-wrapped multipacks with plastic-free multibuys on tinned food eliminating 350 tonnes of plastic from the environment. This will see 67 million pieces of plastic eliminated from Tesco own-brand products as well as branded products like Kraft Heinz, who, from March 2nd, are rolling this initiative out across all canned products sold in Tesco.

Sainsbury’s has committed to investing £1 billion over 20 years towards becoming a Net Zero business across its own operations by 2040. The programme will focus on reducing carbon emissions, food waste, plastic packaging and water usage and increasing recycling, biodiversity and healthy and sustainable eating.

Asda is to offer shoppers the opportunity to fill up their own containers with products, including its own-brand coffee, Kellogg’s cereals, and PG Tips tea. The supermarket’s first “test and learn” sustainability store will be launched in Leeds in May.


A bioplastic made entirely from potato starch has been developed by Kompuestos, a producer of sustainable plastic compounds. The bioplastic reportedly biodegrades in four weeks and is aimed at replacing supermarket plastic bags for fruit and vegetables. 

Can food waste be turned into packaging? A £1.15m fund for businesses is launched by the UK government for businesses to follow in the footsteps of innovate companies who have done just that.

And Biffa, the leading UK recycler and waste management provider, has announced the opening of its new £27.5m state-of-the-art PET plastic bottle recycling facility in Seaham, County Durham.

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