European packaging producer Greiner Packaging, in collaboration with the Austrian Institute for Polymer Extrusion and Compounding (IPEC), is working on realistic production technologies for the development of packaging foils with a new coextrusion facility.
Co-financed by Greiner Packaging, the new facility built at the IPEC in the Johannes Kepler University (JKU) in Linz is supporting the development of barrier foil extruders.
The new IPEC coextrusion facility is effective immediately and available for testing and research.
The facility has been set up as part of the Competence Headquarters initiated by Greiner Packaging, the primary aim of which is to further develop essential plastics processing technologies for the production of low-migration, multi-layer plastic barrier packaging (multi-barrier technology).
Greiner Packaging research and development department project manager and head Bettina Schrenk said: "Barrier packaging made of plastic is increasingly gaining importance, since its numerous advantages make it an attractive alternative to packaging made of glass or tin plate.
"Plastic packaging is particularly light. Compared to conventional packaging, this saves on costs, as well as emissions occurring during transport."
When equipped with a barrier effect, plastic packaging helps protect the filling against outside influences, such as oxygen, or against the migration of the packaging contents into the filling.
This can help barrier packaging largely extend food shelf life without the need to add any preservatives.
The new low-migration plastics are also making plastics safer, far beyond the legal requirements.
Greiner Packaging managing director Franz Reitbauer said: "Moreover, the knowledge gained from the project should also help create jobs for highly qualified employees at our competence centre for barrier and material development at the Kremsmünster site."
Over the next few years, Greiner Packaging will be investing more than €2m into the current research project.