The ABA is pleased to share the post originally published by our sister UK based Association, BBIA, in response to this week’s UCL study into the use of home #compostable #packaging in the UK.

  • DualPakECO® trays are made of lightweight paperboard and coated with BASF’s biopolymer ecovio® PS 1606
  • Commercially compostable solution extends end-of-life options for paperbased food packaging and supports organics recycling
  • Performance regarding processing, sealing, printability and strength on same level as conventional PET food trays
  • Food trays can be used in microwave and conventional ovens, in fridges and deep freezers

 

Bayswater, Australia/Ludwigshafen, Germany, June 29, 2022: The Australian food packaging manufacturer Confoil and BASF have cooperated to develop a certified compostable and dual ovenable food tray based on paper. The paper tray is coated on the inside with BASF’s ecovio® PS 1606, a partly bio-based and certified compostable biopolymer especially developed for coating food packaging made of paper or board. The trays called DualPakECO® are certified according to the Australian standard AS4736-2006 and food contact approved according to international requirements. They can be used for ready-to-eat meals like lasagne, curries and stir-fries available as cold or frozen in supermarkets as well as for catering and take-away from restaurants.

The trays extend the end-of-life options for paper-based packaging by being organically recyclable: They can be commercially composted with the organic waste collected in organic waste bins. Thus the new packaging solution supports organics recycling of food residues and food-soiled packaging which increases the diversion of food waste from landfill and incineration.

Alternative to PET plus sustainability benefit

This new certified compostable solution is an alternative to conventional PET packaging for ready-to-eat meals: The trays can be heated in conventional ovens and microwaves, can be chilled or frozen. They show excellent barrier properties against fats, liquids and odors helping to preserve freshness and flavors. “We wanted to create a paper-based food tray that meets all the food industries’ requirements but with the added benefit that it is certified compostable”, said Alison Buxton, CEO of
Confoil. “With BASF’s certified compostable biopolymer ecovio® PS 1606 we have found the ideal component to take the next step towards sustainable solutions in our portfolio and to help our customers reach their sustainability targets at the same time. Our joint development represents a shift to paper-based and certified compostable material in order to support the Australian 2025 National Plastics Plan which aims at reducing the impact of packaging on the environment.Composting trials have shown that the DualPakECO® trays break down into water, carbon dioxide and nutrient-rich compost within four to six weeks under commercial composting conditions.

ecovio® PS 1606 extends end-of-life options for paper applications

The paperboard for DualPakECO® can easily be formed and allows for printability. The board is lightweight yet rigid enough for in-line production facilities. It also offers secure sealing across a variety of film substrates and machinery. The paper tray is coated with ecovio® PS 1606 in a mono-layer extrusion process. Due to its excellent migration barrier properties the BASF biopolymer also enables the use of recycled paper in food applications. The high content of renewable raw materials leads to a reduced material carbon footprint, which allows savings of greenhouse gas emissions. “Composting is the most resource-efficient process for food waste recycling”, said Rowan Williams from Market Development Biopolymers at BASF. “This packaging solution supports a circular economy as it contributes to the diversion of food waste and food-soiled packaging from landfills and incineration,
thus avoiding associated greenhouse gas emissions. Currently available PET food trays are not reusable, they are difficult and uneconomical to recycle mechanically – so in reality they mostly go to landfill or incineration. With Confoil we found the ideal partner to develop a solution that proves the feasibility of a food package that combines sustainability with high technical performance.

ecovio® PS 1606 can be used in applications with cold or hot contents as well as for bowls and plates with dry, solid, fluid or fatty contents. BASF offers ecovio® grades for both extrusion coating and lamination technology. Depending on the ecovio® grade used in combination with the type of paper or board, home and industrial compostable solutions are possible.

Market introduction at the Australian Organics Recycling Association Conference

The DualPakECO® trays were introduced to the market at the Annual Conference 2022 of the Australian Organics Recycling Association (AORA) in Glenelg, Australia. On this occasion, the chairman of AORA, Peter Wadewitz, said: “The Australian standards are the most stringent ones for compostable plastics in the world. Commercial composting is an integral part of a circular economy where organic waste can be turned into a valuable resource rather than be disposed of in landfill or incinerated. Compost from organic recycling can be used in agriculture to improve degraded soils and return organic matter to soils ensuring future productivity.” The new packaging solution is suitable for organics recycling such as the Australian FOGO (Food Organics and Garden Organics). This is a kerbside collection service that allows food scraps to be added to the garden waste bin so it can be recycled into high-quality compost. Through the National Waste Policy Plan, Australia’s states and territories have committed themselves to increase FOGO collection services, agreeing to introduce them to all households and businesses by the end of 2023.

About Confoil

Confoil is a family-owned Australian manufacturer of food packaging since 1966. Our humble beginnings commenced as we embarked on the design and manufacturing of a wide variety of foil trays and containers. Since that time, our diverse range of products has grown substantially, with our range now consisting of more than 450 individual food packaging items. We supply to a variety of customers, from distributors to food manufacturers. Our head office and manufacturing facility is located in Bayswater, Melbourne. Confoil employs approximately 150 people and also has operations throughout New Zealand. Further information at www.confoil.com.au.

About BASF

At BASF, we create chemistry for a sustainable future. We combine economic success with environmental protection and social responsibility. Around 111,000 employees in the BASF Group contribute to the success of our customers in nearly all sectors and almost every country in the world. Our portfolio comprises six segments: Chemicals, Materials, Industrial Solutions, Surface Technologies, Nutrition & Care and Agricultural Solutions. BASF generated sales of €78.6 billion in 2021. BASF shares are traded on the stock exchange in Frankfurt (BAS) and as American Depositary Receipts (BASFY) in the U.S. Further information at www.basf.com.

Source: https://www.basf.com/global/en/media/news-releases/2022/06/p-22-270.html

Compost Connect is a brand-agnostic and not-for-profit initiative that aims to divert organic waste from landfill by connecting foodservice businesses to composters and certified compostable packaging suppliers.

Businesses can sign up by heading to the Compost Connect website, typing in their suburb or postcode, finding the nearest compost partner to them and requesting a quote to start their organic waste collection. Compost Connect club members can also get a free front-of-house compost bin and signage to let their customers know they are composting.

The platform also connects end users to responsible cafes and councils who compost, end users can find this by simply looking up their postcodes on the Compost Club Members Map.

Since the launch of the platform in May 2021, Compost Connect has achieved amazing results. They have partnered with 28 organic waste collectors across Australia and New Zealand and 18 distributors of compostable packaging.

A whopping 348 businesses have signed up and joined the Compost Club, participating in the diversion of an average of 2,700 Tons of organic waste per year.

Education on organics recycling and how composting fits into the circular economy, is a top priority for Compost Connect. Resources are shared via the blog, Facebook & Instagram and a
newsletter.

With an average of 6,000 website sessions per month and a gain of 8,915 followers on Social Media in the past year, it’s clear the topic of composting is rapidly gaining momentum.

Compost Connect also maps out councils providing Food Organics and Garden Organics
collection to their communities. From their latest study, out of the 536 councils in Australia, 108 currently offer a FOGO/green bin service to their residents, from which 73 accept compostable packaging. Check if your council offers composting on this page.

The next steps for this organisation are to grow the number of partnerships with composters and foodservice businesses, encourage councils to rapidly implement food organics collection, and to involve all stakeholders in the wider value chain, with the goal to develop Compost Connect as a true Product Stewardship for compostable packaging. Visit the website for more information and help fight climate change by composting!

The Australasian Bioplastics Association (ABA), in partnership with the Australian Institute of Packaging (AIP), has announced the winners of the annual ABA Scholarship program for Australia and New Zealand.

The Scholarship program enables one eligible candidate the opportunity to undertake a Diploma in Packaging Technology valued at $9,000 and a second person the opportunity to undertake a Certificate in Packaging valued at $7,000.

Certificate in Packaging Winner

The winner of the first 2022 ABA Scholarship which enables one person to undertake a Certificate in Packaging is Lea Reynolds AAIP, Commercialisation Manager, Steggall Nutrition.

Lea has been working at Steggall Nutrition for the last 11 years and has  always been involved in and have been primarily responsible for managing the packaging requirements for the clients.

The knowledge that I have gained through undertaking courses with the AIP over the past few years has been most valuable in both her professional and personal life. Lea struggles to believe that as early as the year 2050 we will be in a global crisis if we don’t find a way to live in a circular economy and to achieve sustainability.

Lea believes sustainability is having the ability to meet the needs of our social, economic and environmental requirements without compromising or taking away the same needs and requirements of our future generations. To her Lea even the smallest of changes can grow into something much bigger.

Through embracing and undertaking further education, she would like to assist in educating others to make more environmentally friendly and sustainable packaging decisions, and more importantly educate her own children who can continue to educate future generations.

For Lea being awarded this invaluable opportunity would mean that she could continue to learn and grow as the industry changes and be confident in the information that she has learned to tackle challenges and to make informed decisions.

Diploma in Packaging Winner

The winner of the second 2022 ABA Scholarship which will enable one person to undertake a Diploma in Packaging Technology is Mark Saturnino MAIP, Packaging Specialist, Woolworths.

Mark’s relationship with Packaging was apparently not love at first sight and for a long time he considered himself part of that faction where packaging is just a physical form, taken for granted and ironically almost invisible the way it has been regarded. So how did Mark end up accepting his first job offer, knowing it involved packaging, let alone to be the one responsible in developing its form?

Unaware for a long time, it turned out he already had this connection with Packaging that was brewing whilst he was doing his undergraduate degree in Chemical Engineering. Mark’s interests and passion in materials, their end-to-end processing, and the encompassing interplay of different sciences became evident during this time. To him it was never dull and disengaging to learn about different feedstock substrates and their properties, and the material transformation they go, including the environmental and commercial considerations needed to be mindful of for the practical application of these concepts in real life scenarios.

Once Mark realised this common ground between packaging development and his interests, he decided making a career in this field. Mark believes that undertaking the Diploma in Packaging degree will enable him to truly fill in the knowledge voids and become closer to his professional goals and personal aspirations. Once completing his degree, Mark would like to be seen as an emerging leader in this industry and engage in discussing problems relating to the Elimination of Food Waste and Packaging Waste.

The AIP would like to take this opportunity to commend the ABA for providing such invaluable professional development to the industry.

 

Companies announce signed letter of intent to collaborate on creating advanced products based on industry-leading Ingeo™ PLA and PHACT® PHA technologies to meet growing demand for sustainable materials across wide array of markets.

Woburn, MA and Plymouth, MN – 24 May 2022 –CJ BIO, a division of South Korea-based CJ CheilJedang and leading producer of polyhydroxyalkanoate (PHA), and NatureWorks, an advanced materials company that is the world’s leading producer of polylactic acid (PLA), have signed a letter of intent (LOI) establishing a strategic alignment between the two organizations and have announced that the two companies are working toward a Master Collaboration Agreement (MCA). The companies will work together to develop sustainable materials solutions based on CJ BIO’s PHACT® Marine Biodegradable Polymers and NatureWorks’ Ingeo™ biomaterials technology. The goal of the agreement is to develop high-performance biopolymers that will replace fossil fuel-based plastics in applications ranging from compostable food packaging and food serviceware, to personal care, and beyond.

NatureWorks is a pioneer in the development of bio-based materials that reduce carbon impact and enable new end-of-use options with its Ingeo technology. As a company, it has developed many of the leading high-volume applications for PLA. In recent years, PLA has experienced significant growth as a bio-based material in a broad range of finished products. Due to its unique functionality, it has been used to replace petrochemical-based plastics, with 100% bio-based content, and enable end-of-use recovery options, including compostability and chemical or coated paper recycling. Both companies realize the potential to further enhance performance and end-of-use solutions for biopolymers, and increase the level of adoption across many new applications. By combining their expertise and technology platforms, NatureWorks and CJ aim to deliver next generation solutions together. Initial development and collaboration are showing very promising results when using CJ Bio’s unique amorphous PHA in combination with Ingeo biopolymer.

CJ BIO is the world’s leading supplier of fermentation-based bioproducts for animal nutrition, human nutrition, and biomaterials at its thirteen manufacturing facilities worldwide. The company recently announced commercial-scale production of PHA following the inauguration of a new production facility in Pasuruan, Indonesia. CJ BIO is today the only company in the world producing amorphous PHA (aPHA), including the first product under its new PHACT brand, named PHACT A1000P. Amorphous PHA is a softer, more rubbery version of PHA that offers fundamentally different performance characteristics than crystalline or semi-crystalline forms of PHA. It is certified biodegradable under industrial compost, soil (ambient), and marine environments. Modifying PLA with amorphous PHA leads to improvements in mechanical properties, such as toughness, and ductility, while maintaining clarity. It also allows adjustment in the biodegradability of PLA and can potentially lead to a home compostable product.

“Plastics are an essential material that improves people’s lives, but their fossil sourcing and after-use impact present a major climate challenge that must be addressed,” says Seung Jin Lee, Head of the Biomaterials Business at CJ BIO. “NatureWorks and its Ingeo technology have already helped by bringing to market new material functionality and after-use options. They have extensive product and applications development capability, supporting, for example flexible and rigid packaging that we believe can benefit from our PHACT amorphous PHA technology. I am excited for the opportunity to create new solutions in tandem with NatureWorks that will have a real impact on the challenge plastics pose today, and that will help improve the environment for future generations.”

According to NatureWorks’ CEO Rich Altice: “The demand for sustainable products continues to grow around the world. For more than 30 years, NatureWorks has participated in the circular economy, developing advanced biomaterials that contribute to a more sustainable future. As we look toward the future, we want to amplify the impact of our Ingeo technology with promising, new bio-based solutions, and we feel that with its PHACT aPHA technology, CJ BIO is an ideal partner to achieve our goal.”

NatureWorks and CJ BIO will collect feedback from existing and potential customers across a range of applications and markets including packaging, food serviceware, and organics recycling management to understand the growing need for functional product requirements that also align with sustainability goals. These collaborations will inform the companies’ product and technology development roadmap. The two companies say that the LOI is the start of what is expected to be a long-term relationship between NatureWorks and CJ BIO and are aiming to sign a master collaboration agreement in the near future.

For more information, visit: https://www.cjbio.net/en/products/cjPha.do and www.natureworksllc.com.

 

Photo: Rich Altice, President & CEO of NatureWorks, and Seung Jin Lee, Head of the Biomaterials Business at CJ BIO, gathered to advance the growing collaboration between the two companies focused on developing new products based on their Ingeo™ PLA and PHACT® PHA technologies.

Source: Woolworths Group

South Australia is the first state where Woolworths has introduced compostable fruit and vegetable bags, now available in the fruit and veg departments of all 67 stores across the state.

According to Woolworths, the switch has the potential to divert up to 70 tonnes of plastic waste from landfill each year, with customers now able to compost their Woolworths fruit and vegetable bags in their council-provided green bins for food and garden organics where available, or in their own household DIY compost.

With around 80 per cent of South Australian households having access to council-provided organic bins, compostable alternatives offer an effective way to reduce plastic waste. The compostable bags have been made in South Australia by local manufacturer and Member of the Australasian Bioplastics Association (ABA), Biobag, and are verified to Australian Standards for commercial (AS4736) and home compostable (AS5810) plastics.

Woolworths South Australia Assistant State Manager, Elisha Moore said: “We’re growing greener across our stores and this represents a big breakthrough in sustainable shopping for our customers here in South Australia.

“We’re thrilled to be the first major supermarket in South Australia to roll out compostable fruit and veg bags in all our stores statewide as we work together with our customers to reduce plastic waste and protect the environment.

“South Australia leads the nation in household access to council-provided composting, so it’s a great place to launch sustainable initiatives like these new bags.

“We’d love to see access to composting across the country increase in line with South Australia to create opportunities to offer green compostable alternatives like this more broadly.”

Deputy Premier of South Australia and Environment Minister, Hon. Susan Close said: “South Australia was the logical choice for Woolworths to launch these certified compostable fruit and vegetable bags in all their stores across the state, because all our metropolitan councils in Adelaide accept food waste in their green bins and so do many regional and country councils.

“No other state in Australia has this level of waste and recycling available to households.”

The new bags are designed to be used as liners in council-provided food scrap ‘kitchen caddies’. Customers can check with their local council to find out whether their kerbside collection services include composting.

Woolworths recently trialled the compostable fruit and vegetable bags in a small number of South Australian stores, receiving positive feedback from customers. More than 75 per cent of those surveyed during the trial said it was important that Woolworths provide compostable bags to customers.

Through its ongoing work to reduce plastic, Woolworths has removed around 800 tonnes of plastic from produce packaging since 2018. The retailer has committed to making 100 per cent of its own brand packaging recyclable, compostable or reusable by the end of 2023.

In 2018, Woolworths was the first national supermarket to phase out single-use plastic shopping bags and straws across the country, resulting in more than 9 billion bags and 280 million straws being taken out of circulation to date.

Source: Woolworths Group

 

The Australasian Bioplastics Association (ABA), is pleased to announce that the 2022 ABA Scholarship program for Australia and New Zealand is now open for submissions. The scholarship program is coordinated in partnership with the Australian Institute of Packaging (AIP), and will enable one eligible candidate the opportunity to undertake a Diploma in Packaging Technology valued at $9,000 and a second person the opportunity to undertake a Certificate in Packaging valued at $7,000.

President of the ABA, Rowan Williams said that ‘The ABA is pleased to once again sponsor the Scholarship program which has been designed to recognise and support deserving and emerging packaging professionals as part of their professional development.’

“We encourage all ABA and AIP Members that are interested in developing their packaging technology skills to apply for these Scholarships following on from the success of last year’s ABA Scholarships and the extremely worthy recipients Karunia Adhiputra and Maria Becerril-Roman,” Mr Williams said.

“The demand for the field of bioplastics continues to surge globally for both certified compostable and fully renewable or biobased bioplastics. These niche products are designed to replace other types of packaging that after contact with food, are uneconomical or difficult to reuse or recycle. Education on these materials, as partly provided as content from these Scholarships, will aid future packaging professionals to make sustainable design choices.” he said.

2021 Diploma in Packaging Technology winner, Karunia Adhiputra AAIP, who is a Packaging Specialist at Nestlé Australia, said that the Diploma in Packaging Technology has helped him to gain a holistic understanding of packaging technology and industry.

“The Diploma in Packaging Technology is a comprehensive course that teaches all concepts of packaging, from technical development, manufacturing, economics and sustainability of packaging materials. The course sets up candidates to achieve a well-rounded understanding of how packaging fits within the supply chain, and important factors that need to be considered to ensure packaging is developed with every aspect of its lifecycle in mind. Undertaking the Diploma has certainly helped me gain a better understanding of developing new packaging materials that are fit for purpose, a focus that is growing in the area of sustainability. I would wholeheartedly encourage all packaging professionals who have not yet completed the Diploma in Packaging Technology to consider applying for the 2022 ABA Scholarship program, it will spark inspiration to bring your packaging to the next level.” Mr Adhiputra said.

2021 Certificate in Packaging winner Maria Becerril-Roman AAIP, who is a Packaging Technologist at Mondelez International, said that winning the second ABA Scholarship was a great personal honour.

“Beyond the opportunity to keep learning and foster my career in packaging science and technology, the scholarship has opened the opportunity to connect with other AIP Members, the wider industry, receive the guidance of my mentors, apply the concepts and skills to every-day work challenges, attain a globally recognised degree, and encourage peers to continue learning and being prepared in this ever-changing space,” Ms Becerril-Roman said.

“I encourage all professionals wanting to deep-dive into the intricacies that sit behind a well-designed pack and how to best tackle the most common challenges in this industry, to apply for the 2022 ABA Scholarship program and reach out to industry and academic connections for your references to participate in this exciting opportunity to contribute to the growth and development of the packaging industry in Australia and the world.” she said.

AIP’s Education Director, Prof. Pierre Pienaar FAIP, CPP, added that that undertaking higher education in Packaging Technology is critical for the ANZ region.

“Whilst many people working in the fields of packaging are well-qualified, as evident in our 2022 Career & Salary Survey, they are not qualified in the science, engineering and/or technology behind packaging,” Prof. Pienaar said.

“We need to see more people in the industry undertaking internationally qualified and recognised degrees such as the Certificate in Packaging  and the Diploma in Packaging Technology. This will go a long way in improving the overall knowledge and skillset in the industry ensuring that we do not have a technical knowledge void within the packaging industry in the next 5-10 years. It is so important that we see more people working in and around packaging advance their technical knowledge,”

“The AIP is offering more academic courses than ever before in the various fields of packaging and I encourage each of you, irrespective of age, to take on this challenge. None of us are too old to learn something new so apply for the 2022 ABA Scholarship program today.” he said.

Visit http://aipack.com.au/australasian-bioplastics-association-aba-scholarship/ to access the entry forms and criteria for each scholarship. Applications close on 8 of April 2022.

At the 2021 AGM, members of the Australasian Bioplastics Association (ABA) voted to form the Agricultural Products Group to enable focus for those members who have interest in agricultural plastics applications which include the following.

  • Protective films
  • Piping, irrigation and drainage
  • Nets and mesh
  • Twine and ropes
  • Bagging
  • Storage trays
  • Labels.

Many thousands of tonnes of plastics waste is generated by the agricultural and horticultural industries in Australia. Most recent figures available are from Horticulture Australia which reports that in 2012-13, over 59,000 T of plastics was used in agriculture and horticulture in Australia while 3,800 T was recycled (1).

The bioplastics industry has products which are compostable and biodegradable,  made using renewable resources or both. Compostable and biodegradable plastics assist in facilitating organics recycling and reduction of waste to landfill, while durable plastics made using renewable resources and identical in all other ways to those made using fossil resources, can be recycled in the plastics recycling stream.

The Agricultural Products Group will continue the work done by the ABA with concentration on agricultural plastics applications where replacement with bioplastics can assist reduction in waste to landfill, microplastics generation and enable recycling within the conventional plastics recycling infrastructure.

 

(1) Final Report Innovative ways to address waste management on vegetable farms. Dr Anne-Maree Boland RMCG Project Number: VG13109

Parliament of New South Wales announced the release of the report of Portfolio Committee No. 7 – Planning and Environment, entitled Waste Avoidance and Resource Recovery Amendment (Plastics Reduction) Bill 2021.  The report was tabled with the Clerk of the Parliaments on 12 August 2021.

The report is available on the Parliament of New South Wales website, along with submissions, transcripts of evidence and other inquiry documents.

The report is now with the government for consideration. The government is required to respond to the committee’s recommendation within six months.

Waste Avoidance and Resource Recovery Amendment (Plastic Reduction) Bill 2021

Australia’s first national composting network is launching this month, an online platform that connects foodservice businesses with industrial composters nationwide. The network aims to reduce the one million tonnes of organic waste created by Australia’s foodservice industry every year, which is the weight of nearly 19 Sydney Harbour Bridges.

Ambassador Neil Perry, who will be using the service for his new sustainably focused restaurant, Margaret, opening in Double Bay this June, has grave concerns for the future of Australia and is calling for others in the hospitality sector to take accountability for the waste they bring into the world.

Perry explains, “I’m scared for what the world might look like for my children and children’s children. If we don’t act now, we’re going to end up in a really awful situation. Sadly, it’s unsurprising that the foodservice industry creates so much waste, however, we still have the opportunity to change this if we make transformations now.”

“As a country, we need to re-think our processes and start thinking of the bigger picture. We need to work together to address the problem, reduce organic waste and contribute to achieving a better society for future generations. This initiative is going to change how the foodservice industry operates for the greater good of our country.”

Global bar consultant and bartender, Matt Whiley, is also joining the movement through his new South Eveleigh venue and the world’s first permanent no-waste bar, Re. Whiley adds, “It’s never been more important to recognise that we all have a responsibility to make changes now that are desperately needed to shape our future for the better. We’ve developed Re with an overriding commitment to sustainability with a minimal-waste mentality and so this new composting network, is going to help us maintain this ethos by diverting any waste created from landfill to compost.”

Officially launching this month, the network already services over 2,200 postcodes, with the aim to increase to over 4,000 postcodes. Through its trials, Compost Connect has already diverted more than 4,500 tonnes of organics and packaging from landfill, processing into nutrient-rich composts in less than 12 weeks, an amount that is set to significantly increase in the next few years.

Compost Connect board member and BioPak CEO, Gary Smith explains,

“With Australia’s goal to halve its food waste by 2030, we need to instigate widespread change throughout the foodservice industry. It’s time that businesses collaborate together to overcome the challenges to create a circular and sustainable economy and we believe that this network can help achieve this vision.”

For more information on Compost Connect please visit: www.compostconnect.org

For more information, interviews and imagery, please contact:

Tierney Kelman, // Papaya PR // tierney@papayapr.com.au // 0434 259 798