Copefrut has developed a new tool to improve the integration of different types of packaging into recycling flows.
Co-collaborator, Daniela Quiroga, project engineer of Dictuc’s GreenLab Research Centre at the Catholic University of Chile, said: “The Material Recyclability Index quantifies the recyclability of packaging, considering not only what type of materials are being used, but also how they affect the products (inks, glues, waxes) that are applied to it and what is the effective probability of recycling in the different countries to which the materials are being sent.”
Copefrut has been at the forefront of efforts to move towards more sustainable packaging in the fruit industry. “We understand that sustainability is no longer an option, but rather an issue that we must develop for the good of our customers, our employees and the planet,” said María José Castillo, the company’s supply manager.
In addition to incorporating oxo-biodegradable bags, macro-plastic bins, Chep pallets, and 100% recyclable boxes and corner pieces into its operation, this year Copefrut packed two containers using 100 per cent compostable bags made from sugar cane for the first time.
The bags were manufactured by Germany’s Bio4pack, which worked with a multidisciplinary team from Copefrut to develop the technology to pack organic apples.
“Plastics with these characteristics can be converted into organic fertiliser, also known as compost, and its main characteristic is that at least 90 per cent of the material degrades in a maximum period of six months, thus managing the end of the product’s life with a circular approach,” said Castillo.