Engel and Austrian packaging companies team up to found “Packaging with a Future” platform
The platform is intended to improve public awareness in the meaningful use of packaging.
Austria-based injection molding machine manufacturer Engel has partnered with six other companies to found the “Verpackung mit Zukunft” (Packaging with a Future) platform, which is intended to improve public awareness in the meaningful use of packaging.
In a statement, Engel said that the seven companies which founded the platform – Alpla, Greiner, Coca-Cola Österreich, Nestlé Österreich, Interseroh, Erema, and Engel – are already making “important contributions” towards achieving this with their technologies. Now the companies, which together cover a large part of the value chain, are joining forces in a network. “The circular economy is an interdisciplinary challenge”, said Dr. Stefan Engleder, CEO of the Engel Group. “Only together can we successfully master this challenge and quickly take the first comprehensive steps.”
The focus of the joint commitment is plastic packaging, which has a particular need to make up lost ground when it comes to meaningful handling, disposal, and recycling and is therefore losing consumer acceptance, Engel said. However, compared to packaging made of other materials, plastics often have a significantly better CO2 footprint. “We will not be able to master many of the challenges of the future without plastics,” Engleder said. “It’s not the material that is the problem, but how it is handled. This is why we are increasingly leveraging our know-how and experience to ensure that plastic packaging can be produced, used, disposed of and recycled in a sustainable manner worldwide.”
As an injection press supplier, Engel is involved in the project at several levels, including process consistency. “[Our] intelligent assistance systems, such as iQ weight control, make it possible to consistently produce high-quality plastic products despite fluctuating raw material quality,” Engel said. “This paves the way for a far more widespread use of recycled materials.” In addition, Engel is collaborating with processors as early as the product and process development phase of many projects in order to continually reduce the amount of material used and facilitate the subsequent recycling of the products.
The seven founding members of the Packaging with a Future platform are also establishing new standards for sustainable packaging at a supra-regional level. In an open dialogue with politicians, organizations, and the public, they are making a decisive contribution toward a differentiated perception of plastic packaging, Engel said.