Switzerland-based carton packaging provider Schweizerische Industrie Gesellschaft (SIG) has announced a €12m ($14.2m) investment in a pilot plant of its new Tech Centre Europe.

Located near SIG’s packaging plants in Linnich, Germany, the plant is intended to help expedite the development of products and packaging.

It will help the company address the increasing demand for more sustainable packaging solutions.

The pilot plant is designed to comply with the latest and most effective energy standards and food hygiene regulations.

Scheduled to be operational by the end of next year, the plant will house advanced extrusion and finishing technology, advanced quality measurement systems and testing equipment.

It will complement the company’s existing research and development (R&D) Test Field and Prototype and combiLab facilities.

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SIG will also use the facility as a showcase plant and location to host stakeholder meetings and interact with customers.

SIG Test Field, Prototype and Pilot Plant department manager Marcel Schopen said: “Our new Tech Centre Europe will make us even faster and more efficient in bringing new products and packaging solutions to market.

“It will help our customers to keep one step ahead of trends and changing consumer demands.

“In the pilot plant and test field of our Tech Centre, we support all processes from start to finish, including sleeve production, filling products and pallet packing.”

The pilot plant is also expected to strengthen SIG’s serial production processability, system validation and future digital technology capacities.

Last month, SIG finished building its second production plant in China.

The plant includes extrusion, printing, creasing, cutting and sealing capabilities and is expected to produce eight billion carton packs a year by 2024.

It is the first aseptic packaging facility in China to comply strictly with Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) gold certification.