The fast-growing market for bioplastics got another nudge forward with the debut of EarthFirst UL, an ultra-thin, bio-based sealant web used for flexible packaging applications that lowers the cost of sealant films used in flexible packaging. Introduced by Plastic Suppliers, Inc. (Columbus, OH), the revolutionary material offers all the environmental advantages of PSI’s EarthFirst family of bio-based plastics. EarthFirst UL is made from lactic acid found in renewable organic feedstocks including tapioca roots, sugar beets, sugar cane, and corn.
Both brand owners and flexible packaging converters will benefit from improved efficiencies, lower energy usage, reductions in product-to-package ratios and lower cost per thousand square inches (MSI) versus traditional low-density polyethylene (LDPE) sealant films. In commercial testing and trials, the company has been able to quantify significant improvements to the overall supply chain efficiency with EarthFirst UL in lower freight costs, reducing costly roll change-overs, requires less storage and reduces the material volume entering the solid waste stream. All while using a more environmentally-friendly film.
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“Customers have been demanding innovation in packaging that does more with less,” says George Thomas, president/CEO. “Our ability to provide an ultra-thin gauge, high-performance sealant film meets that need. The whole supply chain is more efficient, more cost-effective, and with a product that is sustainable and compostable. It is a win-win for the brand owners and flexible packaging converters. EarthFirst UL really is a game-changer.”
EarthFirst UL is appropriate for food packaging applications using single-serve pillow pouches, fractional coffee packs (“frac-packs”), gusseted stand-up pouches, frozen foods and multi-wall bags. When compared to LLDPE, EarthFirst UL forms superior seals at lower seal initiation temperatures. It’s naturally high dyne levels optimize its use as a laminate to PET, metPET, PP, Nylon and paper substrates. UL has a high aroma barrier, grease-resistant attributes and is available in 9-, 12-, and 15-micron gauges equivalent to 36, 48 and 60 mil, respectively.
For more information, visit EarthFirst UL at plasticsuppliers.com/EarthFirst.
Founded in 1949, PSI produces PLA-based packaging films with manufacturing in Columbus, Ohio and operates converting and distribution sites in Los Angeles, Dallas, and Ghent Belgium through its subsidiary Sidaplax VOF. The company also manufactures a range of value-added polystyrene label films and windowing films under the Polyflex brand.