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DuPont: Winner

EarthCycle™-Natureflex™ Organic Kiwi Package

Overview

A new packaging approach using only renewable and compostable materials contributes to responsible sourcing, clean production and effective recovery. This compostable produce pack consists of three materials that together create an alternative to traditional fresh produce packaging. The EarthCycle™ tray is made from palm fiber, a renewable resource, which would otherwise be a waste product. The Natureflex™ film is sourced from renewable resources. The label is also certified home compostable. This packaging simplifies responsible disposal and also supports the natural branding of this organic produce.

Motivation for Change

Mainstream grocery stores that sell organic produce must find ways to keep the product from co-mingling with non-organic produce, ensure that it is charged appropriately and offer a package that the organic consumer accepts.

Performance

Natureflex™ films are stiffer and more oriented than many bio-polymers currently on the market which makes them ideal for use in standard flow-wrap and form-fill-seal equipment for food packaging. Natureflex™ films have an extremely wide heat sealing from 160F to 390F.

Sourcing

All of the palm fiber used in the production of pump and Earthcycle products is sourced from our own plantation in West Malaysia that does not encroach on High Conservation Value (HCV) forests. The wood pulp in the cellulose base used to manufacture NatureFlex™ is sourced from managed plantations from referenced suppliers operating Good Forestry principles (FSC or equivalent).

Clean Production

Introduction of state-of-the-art gas recovery systems which reclaim the waste gases, separate them and reintroduce them back into the process as part of a closed loop recycling system.

Community Benefit

Earthcycle's message is not only about selling compostable packaging, it is about selling and inspiring change. Earthcycle is marketing initiatives to incorporate a number of unique selling propositions that target the consumer directly, building awareness and educating on packaging options.

Material Health

Does not use any bleaches, dyes or chemicals that would prevent biodegradable, compostable and food grade certifications.

Resource & Energy Optimization

Earthcycle Packaging is made from the agricultural biomass palm fiber derived from the palm oil industry, which was formerly considered waste and incinerated. By creating a market for this packaging material, Earthcycle has developed a beneficial use for the post-industrial waste.

Palm trees give fruit 1-2 times per year, so the raw material is more than annually renewable. Palm trees have a useful life of over 14 years.

Categories: Food and Beverage Paper & Board Polymer (Bio-based) DuPont Award Winner

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