DuPont: European innovations in packaging recognized at nineteenth DuPont Awards Ceremony

There was a strong European contingent among the winners of the 19th DuPont Awards Competition, announced during an awards ceremony held in Philadelphia (USA) in August. Tetra Pak, represented by its subsidiaries in Sweden and Switzerland, was one of the major winners of the evening: the company received a prestigious Diamond Award – presented to the most innovative projects – for its development of the world’s first aseptic transparent stand-up-pouch, the Tetra Wedge™ Aseptic Clear 200 S. The company was also presented with a Silver Award for its low acid aseptic microwaveable carton, the Tetra Wedge™ Aseptic Microwaveable 200 S.
Meanwhile, RPC beauté (formerly Crown Risdon) of France came away with two Gold Awards for innovations in the processing and printing of polymer packaging used in Lancôme cosmetic products. Amcor Flexibles Drammen in Norway was a recipient of a Silver Award for the Amcor FlexCan, whilst the German company Seufert Transparente Verpackungen GmbH received a special citation from the judges for its developments in transparent packaging for Nestle chocolates. Overall, twenty-six international food and non-food packaging innovations received awards from a total of 135 entries, around 20 of which came from Europe.
The Tetra Wedge™ Aseptic Clear 200 S was especially designed by Diamond Award winners’ Tetra Pak for children’s on-the-go drinks. The package, still in market development, has a unique soft and squishy feel and see-through look, which 6-12-year-olds find fun and cool, according to market research in North America and Europe. The aseptic process ensures convenient, safe and portable products with high quality taste and nutritional value without the need for preservatives or hot filling.
A further product of the Tetra Wedge™ Aseptic range, the Tetra Wedge™ Aseptic Microwavable 200 S, was winner of a second, Silver Award for Tetra Pak. Designed to heat either sweet or savoury sauces in microwave ovens, consumer studies have proven it is sturdier and easier to handle and pour from than stand-up plastic pouches typically used to heat ready-made sauces. The core innovation uses PET film coated with a plasma deposition of SiOx imbedded in a paper laminate to enable microwaving of high quality culinary sauces and still have the package comfortable to hold and serve even with hot contents. It is also one of the most sustainable microwaveable packages on the market with over 70 percent of content made with renewable materials.
The first of France-based company RPC beauté’s Gold Awards was for its use of bi-injection and electroplating for the cap of the Lancôme - Color Fever lipstick case. Bi-injected and then electroplated in Shiny White Bronze finish, the cap’s materials are selected in such a way that the cap is translucent and metallic looking, with a crisp frontier and a high quality look. The solution developed by RPC beauté requires a complete mastering of the bi-injection and overmoulding processes, and of the electroplating process. In addition, it requires an ability to define the almost appropriate resin to fulfill highly specific constraints. The resulting package allows for greater aesthetics, quality and ease of use at a more affordable price.
The same company’s adoption of innovative processes in the production of the cap for the Lancôme fragrance Hypnose, resulting in reduced cycle times, saw it win its second Gold Award. By tampo-printing a layer of silver ink to the top of the cap using a special ink containing metallic pigments, RPC beauté was able to create a plate backing in a silver mirror-like finish, visible through a clear DuPont™ Surlyn® resin, without any visible glue or fixation mode. In addition, because the fragrance caps are substantially heavy and require a long cycle time, RPC beauté met production capacity specified by Lancôme by implementing a proprietary technique that reduces the cycle time of massive parts made of Surlyn®, which subsequently reduces by the same proportion the number of moulds and machines involved. Amcor FlexCan, an easy-open and recloseable stand-up container, ideal for products that are typically not finished in one serving or use, won a Silver Award for Amcor Flexibles Drammen in Norway. A special peelable lapseal PE makes it easy to open whilst an adhesive tape provides recloseability. A wide opening makes it easy for the consumer to get a handful of nuts directly from the pack, or pour some of the contents into a bowl. For added aesthetic appeal, the design allows the packaging to be printed on all sides, including the bottom and top.
Recipient of a special citation award from the judges was the German company Seufert Transparente Verpackungen GmbH. It developed and implemented a new material and shape for the Nestle Box which includes transparent packaging for the chocolates to better attract consumers. The upper seal is designed in such a way that it consists of four identical latches ensuring effortless packing and removal of its contents.
The DuPont Awards for innovation in food processing and packaging technology is an international industry competition, inaugurated in 1986. It recognises industry innovations that utilise plastic packaging materials in food and non-food categories. The food category rewards advancements from all parts of the food chain, which are made possible, or more productive, by the use of plastic packaging. The non-food category acknowledges innovations that use plastic packaging in industrial, cosmetic, medical or other non-food-related industries. Entries are evaluated on degree of innovation, breadth of application, significance/impact on industry or consumers, marketing innovation of the packaged product and impact of the packaging on consumer or industry buying decisions. Entries are judged by an international panel of qualified experts representing food processing and packaging industries, graphics experts, equipment suppliers, academia, the trade press and governmental, environmental and trade organizations.
‘The high number of entries received this year reflects the sustained interest in the Awards among the packaging industry’, says Heike van de Kerkhof, Global Director DuPont Packaging Solutions. ‘We are proud that our award scheme has become a globally recognised showcase of packaging innovation.”

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