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New packaging film reduces carbon footprint

BASF has been using a new type of packaging film for its Styrodur® packages since August 2020. The recycled content of old plastics in the film saves new plastic material in production.
Styrodur® in the sustainable film. 

After their production, large Styrodur® containers are shrink-wrapped to protect them from external influences and for further transport, stacked on top of each other, wrapped in transparent stretch film and stacked on EPS pallet feet. Since last year, the containers have been enclosed in a sustainable plastic film. The film is a packaging that consists of 30 percent recycled plastic. 

This saves about 30 percent CO2 emissions and 210 tonnes of virgin plastic material compared to the production of conventional film. The recycled portion comes from already used packaging and shrink films. Several months of development and various tests were necessary before the new type of plastic film finally exhibited its special properties. Since the Styrodur® panels can be stored outdoors for up to half a year, the film must be highly resistant to all weather conditions. The green colour of the film is also crucial to make the packaging durable and able to withstand the conditions in outdoor storage.

The ingenuity of Styrodur® production has already been recognised: at BASF's Plastic Challenge, the packaging film took second place among 80 participants. The aim of all the projects was to avoid plastic waste or at least to recycle it. Another film with a recycled content is already planned for the future: The transparent stretch film is also to be produced with 30 percent recycled material.