Stora Enso and Valio trial reusable biocomposite lids

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Stora Enso and Finnish dairy company Valio distribute 10 000 wood-fibre-based biocomposite lids to encourage consumers to reduce their food waste.

The reusable lids also pilot a new biocomposite food package application. The lids will be distributed at Valio’s sales demonstrations in Finland during January 2020.

Roughly one third of the food produced in the world for human consumption gets thrown away or wasted every year. This wastes resources and produces unnecessary greenhouse gas emissions contributing to global warming. The packaging – and the lid – play an important role in reducing food loss and waste by protecting the food items during transportation and storage.

“With this pilot project, we want to encourage people to take small concrete actions to prevent food waste. The lid helps to cover any leftover crème fraiche and quark in the cups, and this way to prevent food waste,” says Jussi-Pekka Lumme, Packaging Development Manager at Valio.

Biocomposite is a climate-friendly alternative to plastics

The co-operation also intends to trial how a biocomposite works when combined with a traditional food package. The reusable lids are made of durable and hygienic DuraSense® by Stora Enso biocomposite material, a blend of wood fibres and polymers. DuraSense helps to replace plastics in a wide variety of products. It has a lower carbon footprint, which makes it a climate-friendly alternative to fully fossil-based plastics.

“Valio was the first in the world to start using fully plant-based one-litre milk cartons in 2015. In 2018, we converted all of our 250 million gable-top milk, yoghurt, cream, and sour milk packages to fully plant-based ones. These packages are part of broader work where Valio aims for carbon-neutral milk, i.e. resetting milk’s carbon footprint in 2035. We continue to explore new package innovation possibilities that we could try out and implement,” says Jussi-Pekka Lumme.

New packaging solutions response to consumer demand

“We at Stora Enso see a strong demand for climate-friendly food packaging, where strong brands searching for eco-friendly solutions are one of the driving forces. Together with our customers and brand owners we are actively developing new innovative solutions to support food chains to respond to consumer demands for sustainable choices,” says Hannu Kasurinen, Head of Packaging Materials at Stora Enso.

Stora Enso is committed to renewable and circular material solutions to improve the environmental footprint of foodservice packaging. DuraSense is another step on Stora Enso’s journey to help their customers to gradually replace fossil-based packaging materials with renewable solutions. With the blend of wood fibres and polymers, it is possible to reduce the consumption of plastic materials by up to 50% and, thus, reduce the carbon footprint of a product and decrease the dependency on limited fossil resources.

Source: Stora Enso

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