Always advanced – comprehensive technologies

In developing innovative new packaging, the choice of raw materials and appropriate technology depends on the requirements of how the product needs to be packed or served. Materials vary in terms of appearance and properties providing a range of product benefits. All these matters must be considered when deciding on the optimal production technology and the intended food and drink applications.

 

Paper Forming 

Huhtamaki offers a wide range of paperboard forming technologies to manufacture innovative cups, lids, plates, trays and other packaging to meet customer requirements around the globe. Customers include foodservice and beverage operators, as well as food manufacturers of ready meals, dairy, frozen desserts and dry goods.

Materials used for paperboard packaging are always high quality to fulfil the customer requirements. Board can be coated on one side (for example for hot cups) or on two sides (for example for cold cups) with a wide variety of plastics or with biomaterials depending on the end use of the product. 

Paperboard is printed before forming and can feature a company name, logo or promotional message. Custom printing is an excellent method of communicating to customers and enhancing your brand!

Huhtamaki prefers certified wood fibre suppliers to support a sustainable forest management according to international criteria.

 

Thermoforming

 Today's competitive marketplace requires new and often complex shapes. For many packaging solutions, thermoforming is the answer.

The thermoforming process forms products out of extruded sheets. The extruded sheet is heated and fed into the forming machine where the packaging items are formed in the mould. Once cooled, the products are punched out of the sheet and stacked.

Huhtamaki mainly use the thermoforming process. Through the in-line thermoforming process the sheet is extruded directly before feeding into the thermoformer. Any waste is ground directly in a downstream granulator and fed back as re-grind material. Thermoformed plastic cups and containers can be printed by dry offset printing. 

 

Plastic Materials

 Plastic packaging is manufactured from a range of polymers such as Polypropylene (PP), recycled or virgin Polyethylene Terephthalate (PET), Polystyrene (PS) and biopolymers (PLA).

 Advantages of plastics in general:

  • Light-weight
  • Packaging design flexibility, from thin films to heavy containers
  • Great decoration variation: coloured plastic, excellent quality printing, embossing, labelling
  • Recyclable

PP (Polypropylene)

  • Wide end-use temperature range (-40 to +130 °C)
  • Can be used in hot filling and microwave applications
  • Impact strength
  • Moisture barrier
  • Resistance to fatty products
  • Chemical resistance

PS (Polystyrene)

  • Transparency and clarity
  • Stiffness and good mechanical properties
  • Insulation and extreme light-weight by foaming

PET (Polyethylene Terephthalate)

  • Excellent clarity, transparency and gloss
  • Mechanical properties - high strength and rigidity
  • Good moisture barrier and relatively good oxygen barrier
  • Very good processing characteristics in thermoforming
  • Oil resistance
  • Limited temperature range (-40 to +65 °C)

Huhtamaki manufacture RPET packaging, which is a material derived from post consumer recycled material (like carbonated and water PET bottles).

Bioplastics

Huhtamaki use a number of different biopolymers from both renewable and non-renewable sources.  The biopolymers used by Huhtamaki meet all the requirements of the EN 13432 standard in terms of compostability.

Our BioWare range includes bioplastic products made from Ingeo PLA; for example tumblers, drinking cups and containers for cold foods. The material is derived from 100% annually renewable resources, certificated for compostability and in addition it has excellent properties.

  • Transparency, high clarity and gloss
  • High rigidity and stiffness
  • Flavour and aroma barrier
  • Oil and grease resistance

Moulded Fibre

Moulded fibre results from a production method where up to 100% recovered paper is dissolved in water to form fine fibres, which are then pressed and dried to the requested form. After the packaging has dried it is once again pressed and printed. Machines used for this process work with a closed water system in which the water is cleaned and reused. 

Moulded fibre can be formed into almost any three-dimensional shape with many favourable characteristics. The end product offers light-weight and strong products that have particularly good shock absorbing properties. They can also be manufactured in different colours or special fibre mixes. Certain applications can be printed for use in the retail trade.

Moulded fibre technology is divided into two categories:    

Rough moulded fibre packs are made of 100% recycled fibres such as newspapers, magazines and cardboard. Rough moulded fibre is typically used in cup carriers, egg packaging and various fruit and vegetable packagings.   

Smooth moulded fibre technology is used for manufacturing Chinet® plates and bowls for foodservice operators and retail sales. These sturdy products are both biodegradable and compostable. The smooth surface can be printed, labelled or embossed. A film lamination is also possible.