The eternal life of shrink hoods


The prestigious World Resources Forum was held from February 24 to 26 in Antwerp under the auspices of OVAM. Valipac was one of the guests of this Forum and organized on this occasion a brainstorm on the circularity of plastic hoods.

Early 2018, the European Commission published its strategy for the circular economy of plastics. Valipac then aimed to make this strategy a reality by integrating transport packaging (ie pallet hoods) into a circular model.

One year later was born the first circular shrink hood. This innovation is the result of a collaboration between the different actors in the value chain. It marks the beginning of Valipac’s adventure as a facilitator of the circular economy.

How to maintain the balance between the recyclability of hoods and the marketing aspect of printing?

This project has highlighted the challenges of the current model: the use of ink or dyes reduces the circularity of the hoods because they increase the percentage of waste. During the brainstrom we organized at the World Resources Forum, we asked the participants about how the covers can maintain their attractiveness and contain all the necessary information while being perfectly recyclable.

Grey is the new virgin

Many ideas have been released. Among the most popular :

  • develop a glue that allows the use of paper labels. This glue should ideally dissolve during the wash cycle or melt at the same time as the polymer in the extruder,
  • develop a soluble ink which disappears after use,
  • accept the greyish color of recycled hoods.