Changing the world with pioneering technology
Cutting back on waste and doing more with less resources is a major area of attention for many companies. This need to become more sustainable has prompted an upsurge in innovation, due to the fact that devising creative solutions can be the best way to rise to the challenge. Quite often, it can also be the simplest ideas that have the biggest impact.
Take the cold drinks paper cup, for example. Around 200 billion are used around the world every year, although currently, none can be recycled without incurring prohibitive costs or greatly reducing the quality of the paper fiber. In 2014, our Performance Coatings business introduced pioneering coatings technology which could have an industry-changing impact.
The breakthrough was achieved thanks to EvCote WaterBarrier 3000. When applied to paperboard used for the production of cold cup stock, it makes the world’s first fully compostable and recyclable cold paper cup a reality. In addition, paper mills and cup makers can potentially recapture 100 percent of the paper waste from the production process currently sent to landfill – resulting in major cost savings.
What makes EvCote WaterBarrier 3000 remarkable is that it contains up to 95 percent sustainable or renewable content and is made from plant-based oils and recycled PET bottles. The PET is “digested” into the resulting polyester resin, which means the PET in the final product is weakened and breaks up faster when composted or sent for recycling. When paper coated with the product is recycled, the quality of the paper fiber remains intact – which means it can be reused in the production of other, high quality paper products, such as new food contact packaging.
A great example of AkzoNobel’s Planet Possible approach to sustainability, the new technology also provides our Paper Coatings business with options to completely disconnect from the fossil-based supply chain, because it can offer customers a replacement for petroleum-based polyethylene films.