Paper-based carton packages feature a lower carbon footprint compared to glass, plastic or metal packages1. But aseptic carton packages contain a very thin layer of aluminium foil that provides protection from oxygen and light – to keep the nutritional value and flavours of the food without the need for refrigeration for months.
Following the successful completion of a 15-month commercial technology validation of a polymer-based barrier replacing the aluminium foil layer, Tetra Pak is now moving to the next level of development - we are now testing a fibre-based barrier that is a first within food carton packages distributed under ambient conditions. Early results suggest that the package with a fibre-based barrier could reduce CO2 compared to traditional aseptic cartons.
Cartons with higher paper content are also more attractive for paper mills; thus, this concept presents clear potential for realising a low-carbon circular economy for packaging.
A recent global study shows that 40% of consumers would be more motivated to sort for recycling if packages were made entirely from paperboard2. Increasing the paper content in our packaging solutions will also help cater to these consumers.
To keep the innovation running, we are collaborating with suppliers, customers and other stakeholders throughout the value chain. And we’re investing up to €100 million per year over the next five to 10 years to further enhance the environmental profile of food cartons, including the development of packages that are made with a simplified material structure and increased renewable content.