Sabic, St Johns Packaging, and Kingsmill come together

Launch bread packaging based on recycled post-consumer plastic

As a result of a joint Trucircle project between Sabic, Allied Bakeries, and St Johns Packaging, sliced bread sold under the Kingsmill brand will be use bags made with ISCC PLUS certified circular polyethylene resin, leading the way to increased circularity in packaging (Photo: Allied Bakeries)

Sabic, a global enterprise in the chemical industry, has announced the successful roll-out of another project as part of its Trucircle program to accelerate the implementation of a circular plastic economy. Allied Bakeries, a UK-based supplier of bakery products, has introduced bread bags made by St Johns Packaging using Sabic’s certified circular polyethylene (PE) in the packaging of their Kingsmill No Crusts 50/50. Following the kick-off of the joint project in November 2020, the trial phase was completed in May 2021 at the St Johns Packaging production site in China and Kingsmill introduced the bags made from PE film with certified circular polymers content to UK stores in September 2021.

The bags are made by St Johns Packaging, a vertically integrated manufacturer of flexible packaging products with operations around the world, using a PE resin grade from Sabic. The bags incorporate a 30 percent content of recycled feedstock from post-consumer waste. Using advanced recycling, the used and mixed plastic is converted into pyrolysis oil which is then used in the production of new polymers with the same purity and quality as traditional virgin plastics.

“For such solutions to work in the long-term, the partners in the material value chain must closely collaborate,” says Abdullah Al-Otaibi, general manager, ETP and Market Solutions at Sabic. “With our Trucircle program, we are pushing for innovative business models to transform our industry from a linear to a circular one and help prevent the valuable material of end-of-life plastic applications from being wasted. Within a relatively short time, this remarkable joint project has shown what can be achieved to make this vision come true if all players work together to maximize post-consumer plastic recycling and sustainability.”

Sabic’s circular materials are produced using mass balance accounting according to the International Sustainability and Carbon Certification (ISCC) Plus program which follows a set of predefined and transparent rules for tracking the material flow across complex supply chains from the feedstock to the final application.

Chris Craig, Joint managing director at Allied Bakeries said, “At Kingsmill, we’re fully committed to finding ways to address the plastic challenge that all food producers are facing. Of course, this is just one of our products, but it’s an important step that shows how food manufacturers and packaging suppliers are working together to bring about much-needed change. We really need more soft plastics to be recycled so that there is more material available for projects like this. We want everyone in the UK to know that bread bags can and should be recycled by taking them to larger stores, but what we really need is for the UK Government to bring forward the date when soft plastics like bread bags can be recycled as part of home kerbside collections.”

“St Johns Packaging is truly committed to developing sustainable and economically viable packaging solutions for the baking industry, while at the same time reducing food and plastic waste. The incorporation of recycled content has been a key area of focus over the past few years. By supporting the circular economy, giving value to plastics, and promoting their use in other packaging products, we hope to contribute efforts to tackle the enormous challenge of improving recycling rates and finding solutions to the plastic waste issue. We welcome the advanced recycling route offered by Sabic as an opportunity to make a meaningful contribution to the circularity of plastics”, adds Marc Leclair, president at St John’s Packaging. “In collaboration with strong global partners, this breakthrough project is demonstrating the feasibility of reusing plastic waste in safe food-grade packaging rather than losing its value to landfill or incineration.”

Sabic’s certified circular polymers form part of its Trucircle portfolio and services for circular solutions that also include design for recyclability, mechanically recycled products, certified renewables products from bio-based feedstock, and closed-loop initiatives to recycle plastic back into high-quality applications and help prevent valuable used plastics from becoming waste.

Sabic is a global diversified chemicals company, headquartered in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. It manufactures on a global scale in the Americas, Europe, Middle East, and the Asia Pacific, making distinctly different kinds of products – chemicals, commodity and high-performance plastics, agri-nutrients, and metals.

Sabic supports its customers by identifying and developing opportunities in key end-use applications such as construction, medical devices, packaging, agri-nutrients, electrical and electronics, transportation, and clean energy. Production in 2020 was 60.8 million metric tons.

The company has more than 32,000 employees worldwide and operates in around 50 countries. Fostering innovation and a spirit of ingenuity, Sabic has 9,946 global patent filings and has significant research resources with innovation hubs in five key geographies – USA, Europe, Middle East, South Asia, and North Asia.

Allied Bakeries make top 10 UK grocery brands Kingsmill as well as Bürgen, Allinson’s, and Sunblest, with options to suit every family member – from rolls, pancakes, crumpets, muffins, hot cross buns, and other bakery products.

Allied Bakeries is a part of Associated British Foods (ABF) plc. ABF is a major international business with a turnover of £12.3 billion and close to 130,000 employees working in 50 countries.

Founded in 1954 by René J Leclair, St Johns Packaging is a vertically integrated manufacturer of flexible packaging products that are sold to leading food and consumer product companies. Still controlled by the Leclair family, the company currently operates wholly-owned subsidiaries in Canada, the United States, Mexico, the United Kingdom, China, Vietnam, and Australia, employing more than 825 dedicated employees.


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