Pulpacktion contributes to the circular economy

Pulpacktion’s Vision

Pulpacktion envisions a 100% bio-based integral packaging solution with similar properties as existing fossil-based packaging solutions. The new product will fulfill medium and high barrier requirement’s as demanded from food and electronics industries. Pulpacktion will provide replacements to current fossil-based packaging using well-known and largely used material such as cellulose. ...Material properties will be enhanced through pulp formulation and processing, along with the use of bio-based polymeric formulations. Pulpacktion will reach at least a 50 % reduction in CO2 emissions by taking today’s moulding technology beyond state-of-the art, allowing for a more energy efficient process and decreased material needs. A successful project will also help reduce the amount of non-degradable plastics that are landfilled each year.Read more

Pulpacktion’s Technical Goals

  • New pulp formulations that incorporate biopolymers and bio-additives, for wet moulding applications.
  • Production at industrial scale of wet compression moulded packages Demonstrate on Industrial scale.
  • production of new 100% bio-based polymer materials with enhanced barrier and mechanical properties for film and coating applications.
  • Development of bio-based inks to be used for inkjet printing applications.
  • Implementation at industrial scale of the production of 100% bio-based tailored-to-purpose packaging.
  • Bridging the innovation gap, moving from laboratory results to industrial implementation.

About Pulpacktion

Within the PULPACKTION project, a cellulose-based packaging solution able to compete with current fossil based packaging systems will be launched. This will be accomplished by the combination of improved cellulose pulps and bio-based polymers. The use of improved wet moulded cellulose as the main packaging material will reduce the final package weight and increase its sustainability, providing a controlled shaped part. PULPACKTION project will develop fully bio-based packaging materials with a high percentage of cellulose for food and electronic market applications. The package solution will help reduce the waste streams by substituting plastics with an eco-friendly bio-based solution.​

PROJECT PULPACKTION

Project PULPACKTION will develop cellulose-based packaging solutions for the specific demands of the food and electronic packaging industries, reducing dependence on non-renewable fossil fuel based plastics. The PULPACKTION project will take advantage of the flexibility in wet-moulding production of wood pulp based materials. Different types of wood pulp will be combined to prepare slurries for wet-moulding applications. These slurries will be combined with biopolymers and other bio-based compounds in order to tailor the final properties of the resulting wet-moulded materials. To fulfill the properties required for PULPACKTION as specific packaging applications using a fully bio-based approach, additional barriers will be implemented onto the wet moulded substrate. For this purpose, new bio-based polymer blends will be optimized and will be processed into multi-layer films, composites and coatings that will deliver 100% bio-based integral packaging with similar properties to existing fossil-based packaging. To reach target goals PUPLACKTION is organized into ten work packages, each working with a specific key part of the value chain needed to be overcome in order to present a new competitive packaging solution.

Project PULPACKTION is spread over eleven phases:

1

Phase 1 will investigate the likely requirements of potential customers and stakeholders, providing the consumer insight required to address expectations. This will assist the project in determining the optimal material compositions that meet customer perceptions. It will also validate functionality and credence attributes for the targeted final applications.

2

Phase 2 determines the optimal choice of basic components – pulp type, bio-based polymers and additives to ensure quality, suitability and cost effective production of compression-moulded pulps. The type and mix of components need to be selected as a function of the production process and specific applications.

3

Phase 3 will optimise the wet moulding process for cellulose-based packaging for the pulp slurries developed in Phase 2.This will deploy specific moulds, drying steps and overall design issues.

4

Phase 4 undertakes production of the composites, coatings and films to reach the requirements needed for the selected final packaging applications. These will be 100 percent bio-based materials, incorporated onto the wet moulded cellulose-based package as structure. Two different structures will be developed, one that will be applied as a coating to the compression-moulded part; the other is a lid for use in food packaging or as blister packs for electronics packaging. Several technologies will be combined to meet the final properties demanded by each targeted application.

5

Phase 5 develops traceability solutions for the packaging, by developing bio-based inks that will print QR codes as an information tool and will validate the QR system in a pilot. This phase will also see the development of a specific, dedicated software and vision system to host information about the products.

6

Phase 6 will implement the innovations developed in the earlier phases on a semi-industrial scale. Firstly, the wet moulded cellulose based part of the package will be assembled with the improved bio-based materials from Phase 4. This will validate their application in food and electronics. The ultimate aim of this phase is to deliver sizeable quantities of the two demonstrators for further activities, including biodegradability studies, validation of product-package interactions and dissemination activities.

7

Phase 7 validates the performance of the developed prototypes in their targeted applications. This involves selecting three ready meal packs with differing requirements and the most restrictive electronic products. The products will be packed in semi-industrial settings; for the food packaging, this will be a specialist facility. The performance of the product-package will be evaluated during its packaging and distribution until it reaches the consumer; for the ready meals, shelf life will also be evaluated.

8

Phase 8 will undertake a full lifecycle assessment of the new packing solutions. The objective is to demonstrate a 50 percent reduction in emission compared to competing fossil-based packaging for food and electronics applications. It will also determine both the socio-economic viability of the solutions and their biodegradation.

9

Phase 9 is dedicated to protecting IPR for the outputs of the project and to disseminating and exploiting the project as results both in Europe and in the global food and electronic packaging industries. Dissemination activities will include a dedicated, regularly updated project website, brochures, press releases, attendance at congresses, conferences and trade fairs, journal publications, project newsletters, a video and a series of European workshops.

10

Phase 10 addresses managing the Consortium. It will define, propose and establish the activity plan of activities for project management as well as the organisation and operating procedures. It will also address the exchange of information between partners, reporting and quality.

This phase will provide the guidelines for the project management during the whole project duration, striking a balance between control and flexibility. It covers liaison with the European Commission on ongoing evaluation of progress.

 

11

Phase 11 will ensure that the project meets with all ethics requirements demanded.