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DIC ANZ Paving the Way to Sustainable Packaging Solutions

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As part of the broader commitment to sustainability, DIC Australia and New Zealand (DIC ANZ) spearhead impactful sustainability initiatives by embracing innovative approaches to packaging. DIC ANZ champions eco-friendly alternatives through the utilization of DIC’s advanced inks and coating technologies. Below are three ways DIC ANZ contributed to sustainability by reducing carbon emissions, choosing/creating eco-friendly alternatives, and continuously strengthening partnerships with suppliers for over a decade. 

Cliff, QC Technician, passing a batch based on the customer’s specifications using Color IQC.

1 Adapting Technologies 

Pioneering Paper-Based Cold Seal Structures with Amcor: 

DIC ANZ has cultivated a robust partnership with Amcor, a key supply partner. Leveraging this longstanding relationship of more than 10 years, DIC ANZ and Amcor have joined forces in the past year to innovate paper-based cold seal structures, marking a pivotal advancement – especially in sustainability. 

Amcor has taken the lead in the commercial production of paper-based cold seal structures, a significant departure from traditional OPP materials, with support from Sun Chemical Cold Seal Adhesive and CSRL. Despite challenges during Amcor’s transition to in-house paper structures, DIC ANZ has successfully provided solutions, showcasing the adaptability of their technologies. 

2 Continuous Innovation & Improvement 

Redefining Ovenable Applications in Australian Packaging: 

DIC ANZ is spearheading the transition to sustainable alternatives in ovenable applications, forging ahead with trials aimed at replacing Heat Sealable PET with paper-based barrier paper. These trials, utilizing SUN Chemical ovenable DFC HS coating SPEF1023, have encountered challenges but exhibit significant promise for widespread adoption 

Moisture Barrier Coating Trials for Ice Cream Packaging with Pope Packaging:   

In collaboration with Pope Packaging, DICANZ has initiated trials for a heat-sealable moisture barrier coating, BARV656, to replace OPP outer wrap for ice cream packaging. Samples have been submitted for pack testing, with the aim of offering an eco-friendly alternative without compromising product quality. 

Once launched, this presents an opportunity to integrate heat-sealable moisture barrier coating into upcoming packaging designs. 

Tackling Plastic Alternatives with Detmold R&D Collaboration:   

DICANZ has taken a proactive approach by establishing a working group with Detmold R&D to target specific projects. The objective is to find sustainable alternatives to plastic bags, punnets, and online delivery bags using paper. The challenge lies in ensuring that the packaging remains resilient against moisture and external elements. 

Shaping the Future of Barrier Coatings (BARX698: Aerobloc) with PPG Trail on:  

DICANZ’s collaboration with PPG on BARX698: Aerobloc aims to replace traditional lamination structures with more sustainable options. The goal is to replace PET/OPP or PVOH OPP/OPP with OPP/OPP or OPP/PE, introducing more eco-friendly choices to the market. 

3 Creating Eco-Friendly Alternatives 

Rolling Out WB AQUALAM with Rolls Pack and Stratex 

Entailing a close partnership with Rolls Pack and Stratex of over 10 years, DIC ANZ worked closely together with SunChemical to introduce water-based AQUALAM and replace solvent-based inks.  

This second-generation ink offers improved quality, printability, and bond strength while also reducing volatile organic compound (VOC) emissions and CO2 emissions by 18-20% compared to traditional solvent-based inks. Early adopters have achieved notable success, especially in producing high-quality laminated packaging using a 7-color extended color gamut (ECG) approach. The transition to AquaLam Gen2 was driven by a commitment to sustainability, as well as considerations for employee health, ink handling efficiency, and safety protocols. These trials are set to transition into commercial supply in Q1 2024, marking a significant milestone in sustainable packaging solutions. 

Richard Seymour, Technical Support Manager, Water-based Liquid Inks, Europe, at Sun Chemical says: “The launch of this new range once again showcases Sun Chemical’s commitment to R&D as well as sustainable products and processes solutions. Truly outstanding high-quality laminated packaging with enhanced bond-strength is being achieved by several early adopters, and we look forward to helping more packaging producers and brand owners to experience the same.” You can read here for more information. 

In summary, DIC ANZ’s partnerships and sustainability drive, aligned with DIC Corporation’s broader DIC 2030 vision, are reshaping the packaging industry. Collaborations with suppliers like Amcor, Pope Packaging, Detmold R&D, and PPG have led to trials and innovations focused on reducing emissions and promoting eco-friendly alternatives. This contributes to DIC APAC and its entities to continue striving forward and support our sustainability initiatives. 

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