Aquapak Polymers has won 4evergreen’s award for addressing recycling challenges, which celebrates breakthrough projects and can serve as inspiring examples of fibre based packaging circularity and sustainability. Specifically, Hydropol, a water soluble, biodegradable polymer technology based on polyvinyl alcohol that can be extrusion coated or adhesive laminated as a film onto paper, which has been developed by Aquapak, has been recognised for its ability to address crucial recycling challenges.
4evergreen is a European alliance of over 100 manufacturers, designers, brand owners, researchers and recyclers who represent the entire supply chain and want to contribute to a climate neutral society by perfecting the circularity and sustainability of fibre based packaging. Its goal is to reach a 90% recycling rate for fibre based packaging by 2030.
Developed and manufactured in the UK, Hydropol is soluble, non toxic to marine life. Products made with Hydropol are safe for existing recycling processes and are fully biodegradable, leaving no trace or harmful plastic pollution should they enter the environment.
As an enabling technology, Hydropol can be used on its own or in combination with other materials to enhance recyclability, compostability and end of life options. Its material properties allow for scalability into diverse types of products and its solubility makes it easy to separate from other materials when recycling. For example, it can be extrusion coated onto paper or board giving strength and barrier properties against oxygen, oil and grease then made into a multitude of different applications.
4evergreen has undertaken an independent scientific assessment of Hydropol technology using its Recyclability Evaluation Protocol. It shows that not only does Hydropol provide barrier properties and functionality to paper, but it aids the recycling of paper with 100% recovery of fibres.
Mark Lapping, of Aquapak, said: ‘This is a crucial endorsement for Hydropol technology from 4evergreen which is leading the industry when it to comes to making paper products for the future.
‘Hydropol provides packaging convertors and brands with a resource efficient, functional fibre based packaging for household, out of home and on the go. It allows product design to support the circular economy by enabling recycling and delivering multiple end of life options. It is designed to be an alternative to traditional plastics, offering their versatility and functionality, and enabling recycling in standard paper recycling mills.’