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06 | 2008

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Paper Coating |

Paper Coating | Laminating PLA Films Laminated to Paper – a Unique Sustainable Packaging Article contributed by Martin Debaets, Sales & Marketing Manager, Sidaplax v.o.f., Gentbrugge, Belgium. Concept Sidaplax and its parent company Plastic Suppliers Inc. are leading manufacturers of OPS & PLA specialty films and distributors of a large variety of other plastic films. Wanting to offer an answer to today’s growing need for compostable packaging films, an extensive range of innovative EarthFirst ® PLA Films, based on the NatureWorks LLC PLA polymer Ingeo was developed. EarthFirst PLA films are compostable to the ASTM D6400 and DIN EN13432 standards and have proven to be competitive in both characteristics and cost with most petroleum-based films. They are a sustainable nature-based alternative to these traditional plastics, offering brand owners and retailers a high quality product with a strong environmental appeal and marketing advantage. Currently, a variety of grades and thicknesses of EarthFirst PLA films are finding their way into a wide range of applications such as full-body shrink sleeves, tamperevident bands and label films, window envelopes, bread bags, folding carton windows, transparent bags, postal pouches, fresh food and bakery product packaging and paper and cardboard lamination for food packaging. EarthFirst PLA Films combine the environmental advantages of being compostable with the inherent benefits of their performance: high moisture transmission rate, good aroma barrier, superior surface for ink adhesion allowing use of water-based inks instead of solvent-based inks, a consistent shrink curve, outstanding optical properties, excellent scratch resistance, good deadfold retention and sealability at low temperatures producing stronger seals. 18 bioplastics MAGAZINE [06/08] Vol. 3

Using EarthFirst PLA also offers significant CO 2 - emissions reduction. Being made from the carbon neutral polymer Ingeo, EarthFirst PLA films can add environmental value to a product and offer energy savings. Most machines readily run the film and shrink tunnels can be turned down. Using 100 kilograms of EarthFirst PLA instead of a traditional petrochemical-based plastic film offers equivalent energy savings to run a 100 watt light bulb for 18 months or saves 115 liters of gasoline. In addition, 44 % fewer greenhouse gases are produced when using PLA. EarthFirst PLA Films are used in many applications, amongst which lamination to paper and cardboard. This laminating film is a compostable, clear film that can be used as an inside liner as a protective layer or as an outer layer as a scratch resistant surface. The high moisture transmission rate of EarthFirst PLA makes the film ideally suited for lamination to paper and cardboard using a wide range of environmentally-friendly, water-soluble glues. The inherent rigidity of the film and the quick drying after lamination guarantee a flat and wrinkle-free surface. The EarthFirst PLA film laminated to the inside of the cardboard will protect the packaging from contamination with humidity or fats coming from the packed foodstuffs inside. Outside lamination of paper and board with EarthFirst PLA films provides protection from stains, dirt or other influences and will add superior gloss and a catching eye-appeal to the packaging. Using metalized EarthFirst PLA film adds a flavour of luxury, which will be welcomed by packaging designers for e.g. cosmetics and perfumes or for gift wrapping boxes. The combination of a compostable, bio-based PLA film and environmentally sustainable paper and cardboard grades (FSC-certified grades and others) brings together two nature-based packaging products in a unique sustainable packaging concept, without compromising on the performance characteristics. Laminating applications include windowed bread bags, standing pouches, windowed cardboard boxes and cardboard boxes laminated with metalized EarthFirst PLA. With the EarthFirst PLA film range, Sidaplax is committed to further develop sustainable packaging alternatives, thus responding to the needs of both customers and future generations. www.sidaplax.com www.earthfirstpla.com

bioplastics MAGAZINE ePaper