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FLEXO Magazine : Sustainable Fall 2010
Frito-Lay Dumps ‘Green’ SunChips Bag Frito-Lay made quite a bit of noise when it began promoting its “green” SunChips packaging. But now the company is preparing to quietly send the very same bag to the trash. Roughly 18 months after launching a biodegrad- able package made from plant material that was billed as 100-percent compostable, the company is pulling the material from the shelves for five of six SunChips flavors, due to complaints about noise. The company is returning them to its former bags that can’t be recycled while it works frantically to come up with a new, quieter eco- friendly bag. Much fuss was made about the new bag, because handling it is, well, noisy. An unusual molecular structure makes the bag more rigid. Complaints have compared the sound to lawn- mowers and jet engines. There’s even an active Facebook group with more than 44,000 friends that goes by the name of “Sorry But I Can’t Hear You Over This SunChips Bag. ” “Clearly, we’d received consumer feedback that it was noisy,” said Aurora Gonzalez, a Frito-Lay spokeswoman. “ We recognized from the beginning that the bag felt, looked and sounded different. ” The incident exemplifies some of the unexpected bumps that companies can encounter when trying to do the right thing environmentally. While consumers say they want companies to be more environ- mentally conscious, pressure continues to be strong for products to be convenient, predict- able and consumer-friendly. “Everybody seems to be on the bandwagon for environmentally friendly packaging,” said JoAnn Hines, a packaging consultant who re- fers to herself as the Packaging Diva. “But the problem is that bags like this come out without researching all the consequences. ” Environmentalists hope Frito-Lay executives don’t give up on a compostable SunChips bag. Gonzalez claimed that Frito-Lay will continue to pursue efforts for greener packag- ing. In the meantime, the new material will still be used on its original flavor of SunChips. In The News P&G to Roll out Eco-friendly Packaging for Beauty Brands Procter & Gamble has announced plans to use renewable, sustainable, sugarcane-derived plastic on select packaging of its Pantene Pro-V, Covergirl and Max Factor brands. The pi- lot packaging program will be rolled out globally over the next two years, with the first products slated to be on shelf in 2011. Sugarcane-derived plastic is made from a renewable resource, unlike traditional plastic, which is made from non- renewable petroleum. The process transforms sugarcane into a high-density polyethylene plastic, a type commonly used for product packaging. It remains 100 percent recyclable in exist- ing municipal recycling facilities. P&G will source the sugarcane-derived plastic from Braskem S.A ., which manufacturers the material using etha- nol made from sustainably grown Brazilian sugarcane. “T his innovation is truly consumer-driven. As we talk with women around the world, they tell us that they want to make themselves more beautiful without making their environment less beautiful,” stated Gina Drosos, group president of P&G Beauty. “ With this new packaging innova- tion, women can have confidence that their fa- vorite brands are helping to make a difference.” Taghleef Industries Launches New Eco Production Line More than a month earlier than planned, Taghleef Industries has suc- cessfully started the production of the new NATIVIA film from its plant in San Giorgio di Nogaro, Italy. NATIVIA is based on Nature- Works PLA bio- polymers, marketed under the brand name Ingeo, made from 100 percent renewable resources. NATIVIA is a biodegradable and compostable film com- plying with the European standard EN13432. The start-up of the new line took place on August 18. The first shipments of NATIVIA began in September. Valerio Garzitto, CEO Ti Europe explained, “We are par- ticularly proud of the work carried out by our technicians. The BoPLA line was ordered just five months ago, and we already obtained an enthusiastic result being able to be on the market now with a film with excellent characteristics. ” Brueckner was the main supplier of this new BoPLA line. Karl Zimmermann, Brueckner sales director, remarked, “Brueckner had been working hard together with Taghleef technicians to obtain such a valuable and advanced re- sults. This is the proof of the perfect teamwork of two com- panies whose leading philosophy is innovation combined with development. ” www.flexomag.com FALL 2010 Sustainable FLEXO 3