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Healthcare Packaging

Healthcare Lab Worker Bemoans an Over-Packaged Shipment

Photo credit: New Africa – Over-packaging-AdobeStock_246517731-featured.jpeg
Protective packaging has a job to do and often does it well. Doesn't it deserve a little credit?

The rough-and-tumble ecommerce supply chain can be brutal. Broken packages often mean unusable products. That creates a negative user experience and generates unnecessary waste.

Protective packaging becomes even more important when the product itself is more important — like life-saving pharmaceuticals or laboratory test samples. In this environment of COVID-19, we’re seeing more of these types of shipments as both ecommerce and healthcare activities have intensified.

But we almost never hear people rave when products arrive safely intact. A search on Twitter for #PackagingSuccess brings up just a handful of posts, with the most recent one from 2018. :(

Everyone is entitled to their opinion, of course. UK lab employee Holly Tipper complained on Twitter earlier this year about over-packaging for a shipment of a 2-milliliter tube of Proteinase K, a fungus-derived recombinant, deeming it a #PackagingFail and #BadPackaging.

In a great example of a productive social media exchange, the manufacturer, Qiagen, says it is working on improving the packaging. And, behold! Marketing savvy packaging supplier Quickbox offers its help.

Perhaps this will ultimately turn into a #PackagingSuccess!








Packaging Digest’s Top Tweet for July

PD Top Monthly Social Media Post

If you follow us on social media, you know that Packaging Digest editors are a socially active bunch.

As a result, we thought readers might want to check the most popular post for a particular channel monthly, which in this case is Twitter.

PD's top-performing Tweet at the popular social media outlet last month was a new packaging-enabling twist on mechanical recycling to allow a circular economy.

In case you missed it before, check it out now…and we welcome you to join our other 27,100 Twitter followers if you're not one already.


Ineos to Market Packaged Sanitizers to Medical, Consumer Markets Globally

Ineos Ineos hand sanitizer

Back in March of this year, sister publication PlasticsToday reported on chemicals company Ineos planning to build a hand sanitizer plant near Middlesborough and begin producing hospital-grade sanitizer at its facilities in Grangemouth, Scotland, and in northern Germany in massive quantities. The intiative was in response to a shortage of alcohol-based hand sanitizer, which had disappeared from store shelves as consumers went into panic-buying mode.

Ineos took that initiative a step further on July 30 by announcing the launch of a global healthcare business, Ineos Hygienics. It will produce hospital-grade hand gels, sanitizer sprays for hands and surfaces, and sanitizer wipes for the home and to the public, it said in a news release. The official launch of the business is being announced during British Grand Prix weekend, which begins today and runs through Aug. 2. Ineos Hygienics is supported by six-time double world champions, the Mercedes-AMG Petronas Formula One team, which will carry the brand’s name on its car.


Ineos hand sanitizer
As Europe’s largest producer of ultra-high-purity ethanol and isopropyl alcohol, which are the two main ingredients used in sanitizer products, Ineos said it is the only company in the world that can produce and supply medical-grade sanitizer direct to consumers. Image courtesy Ineos Hygienics.

Ineos is exceptionally well positioned to market sanitizers to medical facilities as well as consumers, since it is the world’s leading supplier of high-purity synthetic alcohol, the company told PlasticsToday. “Our sanitizer product range is based on our own high-purity alcohol, which is manufactured under strictly controlled conditions to meet the specialist requirements of pharmaceutical and medical applications."

Made from a 75% alcohol solution, as recommended by the World Health Organization, the sanitizing agent is used in numerous medical and pharmaceutical applications, noted Ineos, many of which are active in some way in slowing the spread of COVID-19, preventing its transmission, treating those infected, and even in the search for a vaccine, said the spokesperson.

Although Ineos is a newcomer to the consumer hand-sanitizer space, it is confident that it will garner significant market share, because “we produce the highest quality medical-grade ethanol and we are the largest producer of ethanol in the world,” Ineos told PlasticsToday. “This gives us an advantage in the market, as our product has the best quality ethanol in it.” And the company believes that demand for hand sanitizer will not ebb if and when the pandemic recedes. “Covid-19 has changed the way that everyone views and values hygiene and I think hand sanitizers will become an everyday part of people's lives,” said the Ineos spokesperson.

The Ineos Hygienics business actually took shape during the pandemic, when Ineos built six factories — each of them in less than 10 days — to produce millions of bottles of sanitizer that were distributed free of charge to hospitals. Now officially launched, Ineos Hygienics will begin by marketing hand sanitizer and anti-bacterial wipes, but it will add other product lines in the near future.

“To date, we’ve delivered more than four million bottles of sanitizer to hospitals around the world, bringing confidence to thousands of frontline medical staff and care providers,” said George Ratcliffe, Chief Operating Officer of Ineos Hygienics, in a prepared statement. “Now, we’re able to offer that same level of protection to the public. Ineos sanitizer products will now help us all to target viruses and bacteria with confidence at home, at work, and beyond.”

Ineos Hygienics has its headquarters in the United Kingdom, where it operates a plant in Newton Aycliffe. It also has facilities in Herne, Germany; Etain, France; and Jacksonville, FL, and Neville Island, PA.


A Packaging First: BOPP Film Labels are HDPE Recyclable

Avery Dennison Avery Dennison recycling-friendly BOPP label
New labeling option means that HDPE containers are certified recyclable with the BOPP labels still on.

Making recycling simpler and more inclusive took another step forward. Avery Dennison Label and Packaging Materials, Mentor, OH, revealed July 29 that its clear biaxially oriented polypropylene (BOPP) films used for pressure-sensitive (p-s) labels have been certified to comply with the Association of Plastic Recyclers (APR) Critical Guidance Protocol for high-density polyethylene (HDPE) recycling.

The Avery Dennison BOPP portfolio is the first to pass testing. The company is committed to expanding the portfolio of film materials with p-s emulsion acrylic adhesives that meet the APR HDPE Critical Guidance moving forward.

Avery Makeup Remover LabelThe announcement gives brands in the personal care and beauty space, as well as other segments that use Avery Dennison clear BOPP films on HDPE plastics, validation that the labels stay with the container without impacting the recycling process.  

The APR Critical Guidance is a comprehensive laboratory scale protocol that is used to assess the compatibility of packaging innovations with reclamation systems. The Critical Guidance for HDPE-CG-01 was released on July 20, 2020. Avery Dennison is the first label manufacturer to achieve certification in accordance with the new guidelines. The company has previously achieved certification with APR Critical Guidance for PET plastics.

“We are committed to continually enhancing and validating the recyclability of our products and are pleased that our BOPP films quickly achieved APR Critical Guidance for HDPE labeling,” said Tina Hart, vice president strategic innovation. “This certification gives our customers the confidence that they are working with a global partner who is at the forefront of industry-wide sustainability initiatives. We are committed to enabling them to not only achieve their sustainability objectives, but also respond to consumer demands for recyclable packaging.”

 “APR is pleased to recognize innovative label suppliers like Avery Dennison that have moved quickly to successfully complete our Critical Guidance Test Protocol for HDPE,” said Steve Alexander, APR President & CEO. “Their collaboration with the APR will help brands achieve their sustainability goals and meet the growing demand from consumers for recyclable packaging."