Sustainable, flexible packaging solutions specialist, Parkside, has collaborated with supermarket chain Iceland to deliver one of the world’s first paper recyclable packaging solutions for frozen food. The truly innovative, sustainable solution has been designed for the supermarket’s Northcoast range of frozen seafood. The Wales headquartered supermarket chain specializes in frozen food and prepared meals.
The packaging solution created by the company is a significant milestone for both Iceland – in its pursuit of plastic-free packaging – and the frozen food sector, as it represents one of the first successful applications of paper flexible packaging for frozen food.
Mark Armstrong, Packaging specialist at Iceland, commented, “As everyone knows, we are loud and proud about our forward-thinking ideas and commitment to plastic-free packaging across our products. We previously worked with Parkside in a successful bid to reduce food waste via a lidding film solution in 2017. But we know we can do more. As consumer sentiment continues to grow for circular solutions, it is the perfect time to collaborate once again in a bid to reduce unnecessary plastic in our packaging.”
Iceland’s Northcoast products were previously packed in an LDPE bag but, following the project with Parkside, they are now packed in a specially developed recyclable paper pouch with excellent grease and oil resistance.
The heat-sealable paper solution was designed to withstand the rigors of frost and moisture in a freezer environment, for prolonged periods of time. This has been achieved by creating excellent heat saleability, and by utilizing a range of water-based coatings with high barrier performance, which are designed to break down when re-pulped in the paper recycling process.
Armstrong continued, “Bag sealing was a challenge, as was ensuring the material had the necessary barrier properties. We also wanted the print to match the existing LDPE bag and therefore a lot of time was spent in artwork and repro to give us the best possible result.”
Sales Account manager at Parkside, Mark Shaw, said, “It has been a huge privilege for us to work on this project with Mark and his team. Until recently, achieving a high level of grease and oil resistance and heat seal ability for frozen food has been extremely challenging. Typically, a plastic layer such as polyethylene would need to be extruded or laminated to the paper, which would then need to be removed when recycling post-consumer use. Our leading technology removes the need for the plastic and gives a truly recyclable paper solution with the added benefit of high barrier functionality.”