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FLEXO Magazine : Sustainable Fall 2009
Overnight Labels Inc. Makes Great Strides in its Corporate Sustainability Efforts PolyCello Thinks Outside the "Pouch" With Eco-Friendly Packaging Frozen fruit and vegetable shoppers will find it easier to be environmentally-friendly with the help of PolyCello's new recy- clable stand-up pouches. With more than one billion non-recyclable, bottom-gusseted stand-up pouches produced in North America alone an- nually and customers demanding greener packaging, FTA member PolyCello developed an environmentally-friendly, recyclable flexible packaging solution. "Our clients want to be greener and we are doing our part to help service their needs," said Stephen Emmerson, presi- dent and CEO, PolyCello. "We continuously pursue opportunities to be environmentally responsible, both in our day-to-day operations and the packaging we create for our customers." PolyCello's environmentally-friendly pouches are developed using their SmartPack Technology. The VOC-free process reduces the number of films required for a given package, saves production time and reduces the environmental impact--- both in the process and in the packaging. SmartPack gives single-layer polyethylene the look of high quality lamination with fewer layers. With SmartPack, PolyCello achieved the high gloss finish and heat resistance they need, with flexible packaging that is recyclable. "We have a vision of moving towards sustainable solutions," said Craig Evans, vice president, marketing. "Our team is dedicated to creating innovative, compostable, biodegradable and recyclable options for our customers and theirs." PolyCello's prototype SmartPack stand-up pouch was showcased at the Packaging Machinery Manufacturers Institute (PMMI) Packaging show in Chicago last year. The first order rolled off the PolyCello line in early April 2009 for an organic line of frozen fruit carried by the large U.S.-based Stop & Shop and Giant grocery chains. This order included 240,000 packages that can now all be recycled. "We are proud of the millions of packages that will now be diverted from landfills," said Emmerson. "This packaging is an example of the work our R&D team is doing to ensure we are a sustainability leader in our industry." Overnight Labels Inc., a longtime member of the Flexo- graphic Technical Association (FTA) is doing its part to become a more socially responsible printer. It continuously implements new initiatives to offer alternative materials and solutions in a serious effort to decrease its carbon footprint. "Green" efforts thus far include: using water-based inks and offer- ing coatings and adhesives which contain no VOC's (Vol- atile Organic Compounds). Earth Friendly stock op- tions are available, including PLA (compostable), as well as OPS and PETG, which offer better recyclability than PVC. Labels and flexible packaging are available in PLA film, semi-gloss (made from 30 percent post-consumer fiber), and tree-free material (made from bamboo, bagasse, and cotton linters). Plus only eco-friendly cleaning products are used for all press clean-up. "Green manufacturing and profitability are not mutually exclusive events. It is possible to reduce one's environ- mental impact while saving money," commented Don Earl, president, Overnight Labels Inc. Additionally, the company recently completed an energy savings program, whereby all lighting fixtures throughout the facility were replaced with low energy usage fixtures; a move that is expected to realize a 10 percent reduction in the plant's total energy consumption. A solid waste program is in place, which includes quality control measures. In order to reduce press waste, an on- site designated dumpster is used to collect recyclable cor- rugated and non-pressure sensitive papers, while plastic cores and excess wood skids are routinely picked up by a specialized recycling company. What's more, Overnight Labels Inc. has begun the process of becoming a certified SGP Printer through the Sustainable Green Printing Partnership, of which FTA was a founding member. To learn more about the SGP Partner- ship, visit www.sgppartnership.org www.flexomag.com FALL 2009 Sustainable FLEXO 3