Henkel enables recyclable paper packaging with innovative coating solutions


    Henkel is working closely with its partners to support a circular economy by rethinking packaging solutions in a sustainable yet functional approach. Following last year’s launch of the RE range which is “designed for recycling”, the company has since expanded the line-up to include both hot- and cold-sealable coatings for paper. Those products are certified as paper-recycling compatible and allow a whole new range of packaging designs.

    Sustainability is one of the most important factors when it comes to packaging of goods across the board. The first step when designing packaging in a recycling-friendly way that is also compatible with a circular economy starts by ensuring adhesives and coatings can accommodate alternative materials like paper for various food and nonfood applications. “The main purpose of packaging is protection – and this is still what underpins our strategy. The scope also includes developing adhesives and coatings that help improve recyclability and allow new packaging designs,” explains Alexander Bockisch, Head of Global Market Strategy for Flexible Packaging at Henkel. “Our two latest developments are certified recyclable and can replace plastic packaging. Both sealable coatings enable full recyclability of paper packaging in food and nonfood applications.” According to Euromonitor, the use of flexible paper in snack bars is expected to grow by 20% in Western Europe between 2019 and 2024, to reach 41 million units. In chocolate confectionery, meanwhile, flexible paper remains a niche market, comprising less than 2% of secondary packaging globally. “We see this area as having significant potential for growth if we collaborate closely with our partners along the value chain to design the right packaging solutions, i.e. by providing full recyclability with our latest sealable paper coatings.”

    One range of paper coatings, many applications

    The coatings seal to both paper and themselves and break new ground in terms of repulpability, food safety and paper flexibility. Their production performance, meanwhile, raises the bar even higher, given the ability to maintain consistent sealing properties, even at high machine speeds. “We worked closely with our partners to design solutions that would be both recyclable and meet industry performance requirements”, explains Davide Coppola, European Business Development Manager Coatings. “Loctite Liofol HS 2809-22 RE and CS 22-422 RE have been extensively tested and certified in terms of recyclability and food safety characteristics. We can offer coatings and adhesives for use on paper packaging in wide-ranging applications without cutting corners on performance or safety”.
    Loctite Liofol HS 2809-22 RE is a versatile coating covering a large variety of applications – from hygiene products and tea bags to industrial hardware pouches and chocolate overwraps. Loctite Liofol CS 22-422 RE also covers applications such as collection cards, cereal bars, biscuit packaging, frozen foods and ice-cream. Both innovations provide excellent block resistance for better release in the reel, while eliminating the need for release lacquer and are compatible with all types of ink. Repulpability verified by independent institutes reaffirms how ideal this product is for paper recycling.
    When recyclability alongside high-level performance is considered, both products are a natural fit for Henkel’s RE range and support the entire value chain when making the transition from plastic packages to paper-based alternatives.