April’s top news stories

7 May 2018 (Last Updated May 8th, 2018 15:38)

The UK Government sets up a £60m fund to cut down plastic, Transcontinental to acquire Coveris Americas for $1.32bn, and RPC Bebo develops new thermoformed screw closure system. Packaging-gateway.com wraps up key headlines from April 2018.

UK Government sets up £60m fund to cut down plastic

The UK Government allocated £61.4m of public budget into national and international initiatives aimed at tackling the ever-growing problem of plastic pollution in oceans.

Announced by Prime Minister Theresa May, the decision was formally brought up at the Commonwealth meeting taking place in London last month.

According to Downing Street, £25m of the total funding will go into research to help scientists develop solutions to marine pollution.


Transcontinental to acquire Coveris Americas for $1.32bn

Canada-based company Transcontinental agreed to acquire the Coveris Americas business unit of Coveris Holdings for $1.32bn.

Headquartered in Chicago, Illinois, Coveris Americas provides flexible packaging and other value-added products across North America.

The company focuses on manufacturing a variety of flexible plastic and paper products, including rollstock, bags and pouches, coextruded films, shrink films, coated substrates and labels.


RPC Bebo develops new thermoformed screw closure system

Packaging solutions provider RPC Bebo partnered with German tool producer Marbach to develop a new thermoformed screw closure system.

The Turner system features a cup, a lid and a lidding film, which is sealed on the cup’s seal flange and covers the lid’s entire surface.

In order to open it, consumers need to peel back the lidding film and turn the lid in a 45° counter-clockwise rotation.


Lego Group to switch to 100% sustainable packaging by 2025

Denmark-based toy manufacturer The Lego Group announced plans to phase out single-use disposable plastics and shift to 100% sustainable packaging by 2025.

The company will aim to use recycled or sustainably sourced, bio-based materials for all plastic-based packaging.

Lego Group environmental responsibility vice-president Tim Brooks said: “To support our company mission, we have a Planet Promise and we have pledged to play our part in protecting the planet for future generations.

“By bringing forward our ambition or sustainable packaging, we are acknowledging the need to find better packaging solutions sooner. We’ve made good progress and there is still work to do.”


Scottish plant packaging firm Vegware to launch paper straws

Edinburgh-based compostable packaging manufacturer Vegware announced it has created a range of paper straws to meet demand as an alternative to plastic versions.

Vegware’s product launch comes shortly after UK Environment Secretary Michael Gove hinted that a ban on plastic straws could soon come into force.

With figures showing that the UK uses 8.5 billion straws a year, the Scottish Parliament announced a decision to ditch plastic straws from its own canteen, bar and cafes in February.


Plastic reusable products manufacturer Orbis buys US packaging firm

Reusable packaging manufacturer Orbis acquired US-based custom packaging solutions provider Response Packaging.

The acquisition comprises Response Packaging’s design, testing and manufacturing facilities in Piedmont and Greenville in South Carolina, Auburn Hills, Michigan, and León, Mexico.

Response Packaging focuses on conceptualising, designing, prototyping and manufacturing reusable custom dunnage and fabricated steel rack solutions.


Costa launches scheme to recycle up to 500 million takeaway cups per year

Costa became the first coffee chain in the UK to adopt a scheme that aims to annually collect and recycle the same amount of takeaway cups used by its customers, preventing them from ending up in landfill.

As part of the plan, the chain has committed to recycling up to 500 million disposable cups by 2020. This equals the amount of cups it uses in a year and around one-fifth of the 2.5 billion the UK annually uses.

Disposable cups are particularly tough to recycle as they are made from cardboard and a polyethylene liner that cannot be easily removed, meaning only one in 400 cups is recycled.


Shorr Packaging expands operations in Nashville, US

US-based independent packaging supplier Shorr expanded its distribution centre and opened a new warehouse at Tech Park facility in Nashville, Tennessee.

The new warehouse is located close to the previous location and is said to be only 12 miles from downtown Nashville.

It will continue to serve the same areas in Tennessee and Kentucky, with a special focus on the Nashville, Bowling Green and Knoxville areas.


Heathrow to standardise and recycle single-use coffee cups by 2019

London’s Heathrow International Airport unveiled plans to standardise and recycle all single-use coffee cups by the end of the year in an effort to cut down plastic waste.

The airport became the latest business to pledge action against plastic waste, which threatens the survival of the environment and oceans.

Single-use coffee cups to be recycled at the airport will be collected by Heathrow’s retail and lounge business partners.


Weilburger Graphics develops new blister coating

Weilburger Graphics created a new formulation for blister coatings with optimised processing parameters that offers increased productivity while reducing production costs.

The company developed the new formulation in collaboration with its customers.

Available under the product identifier Senolith WB Blister Coating FP NDC 359503, the low-migration coating can be processed at activation temperatures of 145°C at high cycle rates.