Clean ink plays an essential role in sustainable packaging

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The importance of inks from a health and sustainability point of view should not be overlooked.

“Printing is an integral part of decisions about the sustainability of packaging for a number of reasons,” says sustainable packaging expert Robert Lilienfeld. “First, ink decisions for health and safety reasons can affect the overall profile of ‘chemicals of concern’ in a package. Second, the ability to apply inks directly to packaging can reduce the use of labels and outer packaging from the point of view of resource reduction and recyclability. “

Providers like INX Intl. have introduced inks to meet these requirements, including a new product, INXhrc RC high performance UV and LED curable inks. The products are formulated with clean, renewable and sustainable ingredients that are suitable for a range of plastics and other substrate surfaces. The “hrc” stands for high-renewable content and “RC” is a rigid container.

“Sustainability is fundamental to the packaging value chain,” said Jim Wegemer, INX director of national accounts. “Printers, packaging manufacturers, and brand owners need to deliver great packaging that meets guidelines and standards set by retailers, ensures regulatory compliance, and securely balances sustainability goals. The key to creating sustainable packaging is to ensure that the inks and coatings have minimal environmental impact and support the circular economy model of reduction, reuse and recycling for packaging. “

Inks meet Nestlé’s food packaging standards.

The inks are Nestlé Compliant and designed to print on non-porous hard plastic and most decorative plastic and foam packaging.

Wegemer explains that the standard “refers to the Nestlé Guidance Note, which outlines the requirements for the production of packaging goods that are acceptable to Nestlé. All inks used on the packaging must be formulated with materials that also meet the guidelines. Some chemicals or compounds may only be allowed to a certain extent, and others may not be allowed at all. “

“INXhrc RC is an important step in our plan to develop renewable technologies for brand owners and printers with minimal environmental impact and reduced regulatory risks,” says Marketing Director Renee Schouten, noting that the inks are formulated without volatile organic compounds (VOC) Solvent. “The natural components are not obtained from food plants. They are non-allergenic and do not contain any nanomaterials, fluorochemicals, fanal pigments, heavy metals or PTFE. “

Markets include drinking cups and more.

Wegemer says the new color system is successfully used in drinking cups made of hard plastic and foam. “This is relatively new, and we are also testing the system for other packaging such as yogurt, cream cheese, margarine and similar applications. It is important to remember that by providing a system with a higher percentage of renewable energy, the solution must also provide excellent printing properties and end product performance, as well as high value for the customer. “

The test results for INXhrc RC were very positive. Print shops have seen high strength, excellent gloss, and true consistency with vivid colors on all types of dry offset presses for rigid packaging, including Kase, PolyType, and VanDam. In addition to excellent adhesion and abrasion resistance, the individual pigment bases facilitate precise and simplified PMS color matching. For printing on non-porous substrates such as polyester (PET), polystyrene (PS), polyethylene (PE), polypropylene (PP), expanded polystyrene (EPS) and polylactic acid (PLA).

INXhrc RC is the next chapter in INXhrc natural-based inks, launched in 2017. At the beginning of this year INX reached an agreement with the packaging innovator HAVI to use INXhrc as one of the raw materials for paper packaging for food; The international fast food market leader McDonald’s is one of HAVI’s largest customers.


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