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Sustainability plays a key role in ensuring Consumer Confidence and, hence, Sales into these growing markets

The Sustainability of materials and products that come in contact with food is now one of the most important criteria that drive consumers’ choices.
Consumers are increasingly aware of environmental impacts and companies have an opportunity to gain market share by addressing consumer concerns.

Ensuring the Quality, Safety and Environmental Credentials of your products has never been more important

The increasing use of eco-friendly, compostable and biodegradable materials and products are trends that cannot be stopped, as more and more consumers demand environmental friendly, biodegradable products and major brand owners react to this demand.

Simple Paper Products are evolving into multi-material, multilayer hybrid ones to meet the increasing needs for high performance, design, safety.
In many cases, paper requires additional coatings or other modifications to perform well as packaging for food products, and this can affect how well they can be recycled or decompose creating new challenges in determining the compostability, biodegradability and recyclability of materials, and subsequently products in this area.

How can the manufacturers of Food Contact Materials and Products ensure the safety of the Consumer and the Environment?

Ecol Studio can support you in developing your strategy for sustainability by assessing your products. Reliable information and test reports about compostability, biodegradability, and recyclability of your paper products, build up a solid technical base for communication to your customers and for design and development of your future products that satisfy the demands of the market.

The European Standard EN 13432
defines the characteristics
that a material must possess
in order to be defined as "compostable"

Biodegradability Testing:
Measures the capability to be converted into carbon dioxide by the same microorganisms that degrade natural organic materials; it is determined by measuring the actual metabolic conversion of the compostable material into carbon dioxide. The acceptance level is 90% to be reached in less than 6 months.

Disintegration Testing:
Test materials are biodegraded together with other organic waste and maintained under test scale composting conditions for 12 weeks.
After this period of time residues of test material larger than 2 mm are considered non-disintegrated. This fraction must be less than 10% of the initial mass.

Composting Testing:
Checks for absence of any negative effect on the composting process:

  • Low levels of heavy metals and no adverse effect on the quality of the resulting compost;
  • Evaluation of other chemical-physical parameters to evaluate after biodegradation such as pH, salinity (electrical conductivity), volatile solids, total nitrogen, total phosphorus, total magnesium, total potassium and ammonium nitrogen characteristics of the compost;
  • Plant growth tests can be performed on composted samples of the test material occurred to ensure that there are no differences in growth when compared to a standardised ‘control compost’.

Recyclability Test:
Determination of recyclability of cellulose-based materials and products according to the standard UNI 11743:2019.

The standard specifies a method to determine the laboratory-scale recyclability of cellulose-based materials and products, simulating the key process steps in preparing fibre for the modern papermachine.


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