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Driving Sustainable Futures

September 20, 2021

Sustainable Solutions for Consumer Packaging

By Giona Kilcher, Technical Sales Leader

With a growing global population and consumption, it is unsurprising that the consumer packaging industry has seen impressive growth, as packaging materials exist all around us – for our food, medicine, household items, and more. This growing demand for packaging materials is stretching natural resources and impacting the environment, necessitating more flexible and sustainable packaging solutions. This is why, at Trinseo, we’re investing in R&D to develop innovative, sustainable packaging solutions like our latex binders for coated wood fiber-based paper and board packaging materials that are renewable and recyclable.

Looking for a Sustainable Packaging Solution? Coated Paperboard Delivers

Wood fibers are an abundant and established raw material for the packaging value chain that are used to make coated paperboard boxes and flexible packaging solutions for several end-use applications, including food and beverage, healthcare, and general consumer goods.

Throughout the converting and value-adding process, wood fibers are coated with water-based latex formulations to extend their performance properties. This is where Trinseo comes in, as we offer a wide range of LIGOS™ binder solutions for coated paperboard.

To maximize the sustainable value of coated paperboard products, it’s essential that the Latex Binders used to coat these materials are compatible with the current raw material recovery and recycling process, so that coated paperboard packaging remains a sustainable packaging solution. Currently, up to 80% of paper and board packaging materials can be recycled, making coated paperboard a good example of circularity in packaging.

Elevating the Sustainability of Wood Fiber Materials

Providers of wood fiber materials are transforming their business strategies to accelerate growth in the packaging value chain while also elevating the environmental benefits of coated paperboard. By avoiding fossil-based raw materials and using renewable and recyclable wood fibers, solutions providers are making a significant contribution toward a circular bioeconomy, with the collective potential to remove of several million tons of CO2 emissions from the atmosphere.

The packaging industry has set ambitious sustainability targets to drive their value generation transformation, focused in key areas like resource utilization and decarbonization, with many industry leaders pledging to reduce CO2 emissions by a third by 2030. At Trinseo, our sustainability goals and innovation initiatives ladder up to this industry-wide objective to be more sustainable. Looking ahead, a large portion of our product offering will be sustainably advantaged, including our latex binders for coated paper and board, and wood fiber-based packaging producers can benefit from these solutions to help them further reduce GHG emissions, improve resource utilization, and work toward circularity.

At Trinseo, we’re aligning our innovation pipeline with market trends and have valuable projects to help the packaging industry in its transformation journey, such as targeting novel coating solutions to enhance the properties of wood fiber-based packaging materials so they can be used in a wider range of applications and replace less-sustainable alternatives. Through our efforts, we’re striving to support our customers and the entire value chain in achieving their sustainability goals and making a positive contribution to our earth and the environment.

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