FDA approves UV/EB technology for food contact in packaging production; research finds flexible packaging is a more sustainable alternative to rigid, and more.

FDA approves UV/EB technology for food contact in packaging production
On March 8, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved the first range of materials cured by ultraviolet (UV) or electron beam (EB) irradiation in any combination for direct food contact. Food Contact Notification (FCN) 772 covers a range of acrylates and an optional photo-initiator, that, according to the FDA, can be “used as coatings (including inks) or components of coatings (including inks) on polymeric substrates, paper and paperboard, metal substrates or as a component in adhesives.”

According to the RadTech Food Contact Notification Alliance, this breakthrough food contact approval for UV/EB curable formulations is expected to open new applications for UV and EB curing that previously might have been limited by lack of explicit food contact clearance.

It may also speed up the development process: Formulations that combine the FCN materials with already FDA-sanctioned components may be commercialized for foodpackaging without having to obtain additional FDA clearance.

Under FDA regulations, only Alliance members and their customers may claim clearance for materials and formulations selected from FCN 772. The range of cleared acrylates will probably be expanded, because Alliance members are permitted to incorporate the Alliance FCN master files by reference in new FCN filings.

This will minimize the additional information, time and cost needed by companies to clear their own proprietary UV/EB curing materials and formulations.

Research finds flexible packaging is a more sustainable alternative to rigid
Research conducted by Zip-Pak, a leader in resealable packaging technology, found that flexible packaging leaves a smaller environmental footprint than rigid alternatives.

Investigators examined eight packaging systems consisting of six deli meat packages and two breakfast cereal packages. The packages included both flexible packaging formats with resealable closures, as well as rigid packaging formats.

Researchers determined that products packaged in flexible pouches had lower energy consumption, solid waste generation and greenhouse gas emissions than the rigid systemsincluded in the analysis. Further, although transportation energy accounted for less than 17% of total energy for all systems, the results show that transportation energy requirements for the reusable rigid containers are higher than for the flexible packs.
Zip-Pak

815-468-6500; www.zippak.com


News briefs

CMM International launches virtual community for converters
Serving as a “virtual” extension of the CMM International biennial trade showand exhibition, the CMM Online community will provide news and featuresfocused on the issues and challenges facing converters and suppliers withinthe flexible packaging, paperboard, label, digital workflow and packageprinting markets. The new online portal (www.cmmonlineportal.com) will be afully searchable one-stop outlet for educational training videos, webcasts,blogs and columns from leading associations and industry experts.

InterFlex acquires EBR Limited
The InterFlex Group, a flexible packaging company with facilities in theUnited States, Scotland and Brazil, has acquired EBR Limited, a leading flexiblepackaging converter with strong market positions in the United Kingdom’s bakery and snack food sectors. The transaction was completed through InterFlex’s subsidiary, InterFlex Scotland, and in conjunction with its equity investment partner, RedDiamond Capital.

Soliant offers new precision cleanroom laminating services
Soliant is offering precision cleanroom laminating services via its new customrollstock lamination equipment. Soliant provides a variety of standard and customlaminations, including films such as polypropylene, polyethylene, polyesterand vinyl to a variety of plastic substrates.



Milestones

Mark Andy has hired Silvia Birtel as its new marketing manager and Jill Smith as marketing specialist.

GMG, supplier of high-end color management and proofing solutions, has announced that Christian Schwarze is immediately taking up the duties of worldwide sales director.

Kammann Machines Inc. has appointed Gerry Nigg its category sales manager, web.

PPG Industries has named GregoryWagner to the position of general manager, industrial coatings, Americas.