Plastic food packaging
Plastic has become highly popular in food packaging because of its wide variety of applications and material types. At the same, time single-use plastic is widely discussed due to the huge amounts of plastic found in the ocean in some areas of the world.
The spectrum of plastic performance: Plastic packaging comes in a wide range of material types, each of which offers specific features regarding appearance, temperature range, appropriate food use, shelf life, barrier properties and environmental footprint. It can be used for hot and cold filling and for microwave reheating. Due to plastic’s good barrier properties against water, carbon dioxide, oxygen and nitrogen, products in plastic packaging retain their flavour, aroma and nutritional value and are protected from external contamination. Lightweight plastic packaging also contributes to lighter truck loads, which helps reduce the energy used for transportation, lower shipping costs and reduce the amount of waste generated.
Recycling: At Plus Pack we support the idea about plastic recycling rates as high as possible. Recycling starts with the design of food packaging. Ideal for recycling are simple plastic materials like PE, PP and PET. Biodegradable plastic cannot be recycled together with petroleum-based plastic and is therefore not recommended to be used in connection with food packaging which ends up in household waste. Bio-based plastic on the other hand can be reused and recycled together with traditional plastic and is therefore investigated further.
Minimising food waste: If recycled correctly, though, plastic is a great packaging material that taps into one of the world’s fastest growing consumer trends: Less time for meal preparation means buying ready meals or food to go. This requires some kind of protective packaging. Plastic packaging has several benefits, and the most important job is to protect the food and extend the shelf life. This makes it a key player in minimising food waste.
To design food packaging that can be recycled, we are working after supporting the Design Manual, developed by the Forum for Circular Plastic Packaging under the Danish Plastic Federation.
Want to know more? Read below or download our Material Guide.