Toppan’s PET-based mono-material for Unilever sachets

New Lux Luminique sachet set offers enhanced recyclability

Lux Luminique Sachet Set Limited Design from Unilever Japan using Toppan’s mono-material flexible packaging ©Toppan Printing Co., Ltd.

Toppan Printing, a global leader in communication, security, packaging, décor materials, and electronics solutions, has successfully collaborated with Unilever Japan. A company release dated end-January 2021 states that positive quality tests are leading to the adoption of Toppan’s mono-material for the “Lux Luminique Sachet Set Limited Design,” flexible packaging sachets due to go on sale in Japan from April this year.

‘Less plastic. Better plastic. No plastic.’

With the problem of plastic waste receiving significant attention, demand for more eco-friendly packaging continues to increase. Companies worldwide are taking various measures focused on targets for better circulation of plastic resources used for packaging and containers. Unilever has announced global commitments for a waste-free world, aiming to halve its use of virgin plastic. It plans to help collect and process more plastic than it sells and ensure that 100% of plastic packaging is designed to be fully reusable, recyclable, or compostable. Unilever is transforming its approach to plastic packing through its – ‘Less plastic. Better plastic. No plastic.’ framework. It is making progress in this effort globally.

Switch to mono-materials

Toppan provides solutions to global companies addressing environmental issues such as global warming and plastic waste. ‘Sustainable-Value Packaging’ was recently launched as part of the ‘Toppan S-Value Packaging’ brand, which targets adding value for society and fulfilling living. The Sustainable-Value Packaging range includes more readily recyclable polyethylene terephthalate (PET) mono-material flexible packaging for individual packages. By fully leveraging vapor deposition and coating technologies accumulated over 30 years as a global leader in manufacturing transparent barrier films, Toppan has now worked with Unilever Japan to switch to a mono-material composition for individuals packages for liquid toiletry products.

Conventional individual packages combine a PET substrate with materials such as aluminum and polyethylene. Toppan’s mono-material packaging uses a PET-based grade of GL Film, a market-leading vapor-deposited transparent barrier film from the GL Barrier range, and combines it with PET sealant.

Lux Sachet Japan Toppan
Representations of the film combining different materials (left) and a mono-material film structure (right) ©Toppan Printing Co., Ltd.

The manufacturing method and material composition ensure outstanding oxygen and water vapor barrier performance, provide low adsorption to prevent loss of aroma and quality, and make it possible to prevent the reduction of product weight during storage over long periods. The use of a single material improves recyclability, and the absence of aluminum film enables a decrease of roughly 25% in CO2 emissions during packaging manufacture.

“We’re delighted that Unilever Japan has chosen Toppan’s mono-material flexible packaging for these new products,” said Yoshimitsu Anamizu, managing executive officer of Toppan’s Living & Industry Division. “We continue to work on developing more readily recyclable and eco-friendly solutions for diverse packaging contents and aim to contribute to the growth of our customers’ businesses and a sustainable society by expanding the Toppan S-Value Packaging range.”

The Covid-19 pandemic led to the country-wide lockdown on 25 March 2020. It will be two years tomorrow as I write this. What have we learned in this time? Maybe the meaning of resilience since small companies like us have had to rely on our resources and the forbearance of our employees as we have struggled to produce our trade platforms.

The print and packaging industries have been fortunate, although the commercial printing industry is still to recover. We have learned more about the digital transformation that affects commercial printing and packaging. Ultimately digital will help print grow in a country where we are still far behind in our paper and print consumption and where digital is a leapfrog technology that will only increase the demand for print in the foreseeable future.

Web analytics show that we now have readership in North America and Europe amongst the 90 countries where our five platforms reach. Our traffic which more than doubled in 2020, has at times gone up by another 50% in 2021. And advertising which had fallen to pieces in 2020 and 2021, has started its return since January 2022.

As the economy approaches real growth with unevenness and shortages a given, we are looking forward to the PrintPack India exhibition in Greater Noida. We are again appointed to produce the Show Daily on all five days of the show from 26 to 30 May 2022.

It is the right time to support our high-impact reporting and authoritative and technical information with some of the best correspondents in the industry. Readers can power Packaging South Asia’s balanced industry journalism and help sustain us by subscribing.

– Naresh Khanna

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Editor of Indian Printer and Publisher since 1979 and Packaging South Asia since 2007. Trained as an offset printer and IBM 360 computer programmer. Active in the movement to implement Indian scripts for computer-aided typesetting. Worked as a consultant and trainer to the Indian print and newspaper industry. Visiting faculty of IDC at IIT Powai in the 1990s. Also founder of IPP Services, Training and Research and has worked as its principal industry researcher since 1999. Author of book: Miracle of Indian Democracy.


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