The innovative Swedish company UMV Coating Systems has developed a machine that reduces the amount of grease-resistant media in fast-food packaging by up to 40 percent. The machine, called INVO-Coater, is a cost-effective replacement for fluorine and fossil-based barrier coatings with sustainable, water-based coatings.
We’re costantly eating more fast food. Paper mills manufacturing fast-food packaging are therefore an important target group for UMV Coating Systems. The choice of barrier coating (media) for packaging for such food and the application of the coating focus on sustainability, quality and economy. But also on consumer health.
“Today, fluoride or fossil-based chemicals are often used as barrier coating on grease-resistant food packaging,” says Tom Larsson, Technical Sales Manager at UMV Coating Systems. ”However, these chemicals are less suitable from an environmental and health point of view. The same goes for wax-based or plastic-based barrier coatings, materials that are neither recyclable nor degradable.”
Coop paves the way
For health reasons, Coop Danmark has banned the use of fluorochemicals in fast food packaging. In an article published in the newspaper Washington Post, scientist Laurel Schaider at Silent Spring Institute in the United States says that they have tested packaging from 27 major fast-food companies. One-third of the packages contained cancerogenic fluorochemicals.
“It is also important to prevent mineral oil from printing ink – which is often found in recycled cardboard – to be transferred to food and thus
to people,” says Tom Larsson.
For environmental reasons, the mills want to switch to more sustainable barrier coatings. However, the machines applying the media have
so far not been optimized for sustainable coatings.
“The mills have therefore had to use large amounts of media,” says Tom Larsson. ”It makes
the packaging considerably more expensive.”
A separate pilot facility
UMV Coating Systems has conducted a study on how the application and the dosage can affect the final properties of the packaging.
“In order to increase the surface location of the barrier coating, and to achieve a film-like homogenous coverage, our machine can use sustainable water-based chemicals without the packaging becoming more expensive,” explains Tom Larsson.
This is because media consumption decreases without sacrificing the resistance and drying time of the coating. The method works equally well regardless of which provider the mill buys the media from. The trial’s pilot facility, located in Säffle, in western Sweden, is at the disposal of mills for testing. The plant consists of INVO-Coater for application and Invo Tip Metering Element for optimal coating coverage.
Strong reduction of media
With UMV’s machine, the amount of grease-resistant media can decrease by up to 40 percent, according to the trial.
“Fast transition to sustainable barrier coatings is a win-win situation for the manufacturer of the packaging, the consumer and the environment,” says Tom Larsson. ”Our machine can also be used for the application of media for increased printability and surface adhesion. In the long term, sustainable barrier coating can also be used for packaging with high oxygen resistance requirements and as an alternative to environmentally hazardous aluminum barriers. In summary, this makes the investment even more profitable. We have a global service organization that ensures efficient operation and also helps the customer with installation and commissioning
of the machine.
UMV Coating Systems has world-leading expertise and a wide range of barrier coating and sizing machines for the paper and board industry.
The company has more than 50 years of global experience with over 600 installations worldwide. UMV Coating Systems helps customers with innovative and cost-effective technologies, consumables and machines. The company has 28 employees and has a turnover of SEK 80 million.