A new European Union project is hoping to develop new cellulose-based materials to replace oil-based materials in food packaging.
As part of the Adcellpack project Centros Comerciales Carrefour, Distribuciones Juan Luna, Papelera de Brandia, Elastopoli Oy, Skymark and the VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland will develop “a new renewable solution that will maintain the freshness of a product and assure its food contact safety”.
The partners are aiming to create a thermoplastic wood-fibre-based packaging material for trays used primarily in packages of sliced cheese. It is ideal for Modified Atmosphere Packaging (MAP), they say.
“Making a fibre-based MAP package is possible… but if it was easy there would be more of them in the market,” senior scientist Marja Juvonen told European Plastics News.
The challenges are finding the right barrier properties and an adequate elongation of the material, said Juvonen.
Adcellpack is a two-year project that started at the beginning of November 2012. The budget is €1.4m and the project is financed by the EU (FP7-SME-2012 Research for the benefit of specific groups).