Categories ArchivesPackaging

Will sustainability strides of 2021 continue in 2022? standard

The ninth in a series written for NZ Food Technology. By Natalie Martin, 3R Group Materials Innovation Manager The past few years, and 2021 in particular, have seen the food and beverage industry in New Zealand working hard to increase its sustainability – both customer-facing and back of house. This has come as consumers demand more ethical and sustainable options and practices, Government announces proposed action around new legislation and regulations, and many industry members show they are eager to lead in the sustainability space. In terms of Government action, in the past year alone there have been significant signals that it’s going to not only use current legislation but make amendments and strengthen legislation to tackle problematic packaging materials ...

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Gov lays out national action plan for tackling plastic standard

By Natalie Martin, 3R Group Materials Innovation Manager If you make, import or use plastic packaging in your business then there is a recent Government report you need to be across. The National Plastics Action Plan, which was released mid-September, outlines Government’s drive to tackle problematic plastics by changing what plastic types are used, and how they are used. It maps out planned actions from 2021 to 2024 aimed at moving NZ to an economy where less plastic is used and that which is used is beneficial and sustainable. This means ditching some plastics all together while upping recycling and reuse. The plan builds on recommendations from the Office of the Prime Minister’s Chief Science Advisor’s Rethinking Plastics in Aotearoa ...

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Take a deep dive before you jump into fibre packaging standard

The sixth in a series written for NZ Food Technology. By Natalie Martin, 3R Group Materials Innovation Manager In the world of packaging sustainability plastic gets plenty of attention, particularly from consumers, but it’s a little-known fact a popular alternative, fibre (cardboard and paper), faces challenges of its own. Firstly though, it’s important not to equate the two as they have different properties, benefits and negative impacts. For example, plastic’s durability and light weight means in most cases it has a far smaller carbon footprint than fibre. However, fibre has almost no impact on the environment if littered. Like plastic, one of New Zealand’s biggest challenges with fibre is a limited capacity to recycle it onshore. In fact, some 250,000 ...

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Label your packaging for sustainability standard

The fifth in a series written for NZ Food Technology. By Natalie Martin, 3R Group Materials Innovation Manager The desire for more sustainable packaging is greater than ever in New Zealand, but if we are going to reach this goal we have to take a holistic approach. This means working from the design phase right through to a product’s end of life and considering how it will be handled by the consumer when they are finished with it. Designing packaging to be sustainable is one thing but getting consumers to recycle, reuse or properly dispose of it is another. Confusion is not uncommon with many consumers wanting to do the right thing but often not knowing how. These ‘wish-cyclers’ can ...

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Don’t muck up your compostable packaging standard

The fourth in a series written for NZ Food Technology. By Natalie Martin, 3R Group Materials Innovation Manager Those looking to improve the sustainability of their packaging may be considering compostable alternatives, but beware, it’s a complex issue. In New Zealand we are faced with something of a chicken-and-egg situation: There’s a fast-growing move to compostable packaging, but no national standard, labelling, or collection system, and few compost processors willing to take it. As a result, compostable packaging often ends up in landfill where it creates greenhouse gases or contaminates recycling streams when consumers misidentify it. Unfortunately, it’s an area, where good intentions can lead to unintended consequences and the risk of being accused of greenwashing. If you are considering ...

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Finding the sustainable packaging sweet spot standard

The third in a series written for NZ Food Technology. By Natalie Martin, 3R Group Materials Innovation Manager Sustainable packaging has become something of a hot topic recently, but as designers will know it’s more than just about ensuring packaging can be recycled, composted or reused. Packaging often serves a vital function as the first, and sometimes only, line of defense against food becoming contaminated or spoiled. This means it’s not only about food safety but food waste too. Designers and packaging technologists must therefore balance food safety and wastage with the sustainability of the packaging. And, in a world where convenience is king, products are often shipped worldwide, and the demand for a long shelf is high, it’s no ...

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