C.O.I.M. S.p.A., an Italian multinational company producing specialty chemicals since 1962 and operating worldwide with nineteen manufacturing and trading companies, is an active member of CEFLEX (Circular Economy for Flexible Packaging), an initiative whose aim is to promote a circular economy for flexible packaging by developing technological solutions and guidelines for the design of circular materials.
Among the various projects in progress, after performing five semi-industrial trials, the QRP (Quality Recycling Process) project demonstrated that high-quality recycled polyethylene and polypropylene for non-food applications can be obtained from appropriately sorted and processed flexible packaging waste.
Within the scope of this project, COIM provided its next-generation solvent-less adhesives, as part of a collaboration that led to the development of mono-material stand-up pouches made of polypropylene and incorporating recycled polypropylene. These stand-up pouches, designed for non-food applications, have a duplex structure. The coating, laminating, printing and metallization steps were carried out at the Bobst Competence Centers. The other companies taking part in the project were Taghleef Industries for the recycled polypropylene film, Borealis for the sealant film, COIM, Henkel and Sun Chemical for the adhesives, Flint Group for the inks and Elba for pouch making.
The trials showed that materials made of recycled polypropylene can be processed without having to replace the industrial technologies currently in use and that their characteristics and performance are comparable to those of virgin materials.
“Our participation in the trials conducted within the scope of the Ceflex QRP project is a further demonstration of COIM’s commitment to developing sustainable solutions, with the ambitious objective of creating a circular economy for the flexible packaging sector” explains Sergio Doldi, COIM Technical Manager for Adhesives, Coatings, and Inks for Flexible Packaging.
“Thanks also to the contribution made by our solvent-less adhesives, it was demonstrated that major steps forward in the use of recycled materials can be made rapidly, while keeping the traditional converting processes”, concludes Alice Donà, COIM R&D Manager for Adhesives for Flexible Packaging.