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Coveris and Notpla Join Forces to Deliver Fully Sustainable Foodservice Packaging

European packaging manufacturer Coveris has teamed up with sustainable start-up Notpla to deliver a range of printed, biodegradable and recyclable food cartons, using Notpla’s award winning barrier coating technology.

Tackling growing sustainability concerns in the food-to-go and takeaway sector due to lack of street and kerbside recycling infrastructure, alongside functional packaging requirements, new specially coated board packs address both packaging and food waste challenges. Replacing all-plastic containers or hybrid filmic-laminated board solutions requiring a plastic liner for grease and moisture resistance, the new naturally coated board packs are uniquely protective, biodegradable and recyclable.

Applied to sustainably sourced cardboard, Notpla Coating is a unique mix of seaweed and plant extracts that provides a food-safe barrier function, and which disappears naturally in 4-6 weeks at end of life. Unlike PLA, Notpla Coating allows the pack to be both recyclable and home compostable and is based on one of nature’s most renewable resources – seaweed – which doesn’t compete with food crops, doesn’t need fresh water or fertiliser, and actively contributes to de-acidifying our oceans.

As the exclusive development and print partner for the new coated board packaging, Coveris have worked extensively with Notpla to deliver a fully printed, branded solution that works in combination with the sustainable coating. Using specialist water-based inks for added sustainable benefits, the printed packs are fully approved for food-contact and offer an advanced oil barrier function that outperforms plastic in most applications. Notpla has also devised a unique comparative test that shows just how rapidly Notpla Coating is broken down by nature, in comparison to other coating materials for food-to-go applications, while other industry testing is underway.

Available as both off-the-shelf Notpla own-brand takeaway boxes and custom printed formats, through Notpla’s existing partnership with Just Eat Takeaway.com, the new packs were also introduced at the Women’s Euro 2022 final held at Wembley Stadium, marking the first time that biodegradable food packaging was used at a major football match in the UK.

Commenting on the collaborative project, Emma Moate Coveris’ Food-on-the-move category Director said: “we’re really proud to have worked alongside Notpla as their development and print partner, marking a major step in delivering a more sustainable future for foodservice brands and products. Given the functional requirements of packaging combined with disposal challenges in this sector, the new coated packs really are the packaging of the future, supporting our journey towards No Waste through combined food and packaging waste reduction for our customers.”