Report by Siegwerk: Why The Entire Value Chain Must Collaborate on Changes in The Packaging Industry

The packaging industry must change its ways if it wants to become sustainable. For this to happen, products from the packaging industry must be developed with regard to reduction, reuse and recyclability. Siegwerk presents this insight in its report “Rethink packaging” and calls for a circular packaging industry. Here’s why the entire value chain has to cooperate.

It is Not Enough to Change Just One Component of The Value Chain

Why do all players along the value chain have to act? The answer is simple and yet difficult to implement: Only if all production units in the packaging industry commit to the goal of developing a circular economy will success be achieved. The division of labor in the 21st century industry means that it is not possible to change just one component. That’s why the industry needs to exchange ideas, present good examples and discuss challenges together. Siegwerk explains that they themselves rely on a network of partners working along the value chain. In doing so, the company says it shares its knowledge to promote the idea of a circular economy in the packaging industry.

How Siegwerk Cooperates With The Industry

One example of such cooperation is Ceflex, the joint initiative of a European consortium representing the entire value chain of the packaging industry. Through collaboration, flexible packaging is made possible. According to Siegwerk, Ceflex is the most important and solution-oriented industrial initiative. Members include manufacturers of packaging films, converters and brand owners as well as retailers, recyclers and equipment manufacturers for the entire recycling process. Siegwerk joined the initiative in 2017 as the first ink supplier. Another project in which Siegwerk is involved in is called the “Circular Economy Initiative Germany“. Its goal is to develop a concrete plan on how to advance the transformation to a circular economy in Germany. The focus lies on the scientific discourse on the potential opportunities to promote a circular economy for packaging, as well as the resulting plan for transformation. Siegwerk is a member of the “packaging” working group.

It is Time to Act

Siegwerk itself pursues the following strategies to achieve circularity: “Design for less” and “Design for recycling”. On the one hand, this is intended to limit the use of finite resources and expand packaging. On the other hand, plastic waste is to be avoided through the use of high-quality recycled materials and their application. To this end, compostable packaging is to be offered and deinking is to be promoted, among other things. Siegwerk postulates that inks and coatings are an essential enabler for the realization of a circular packaging industry. That’s why the Group is constantly developing new inks and coatings that bring the industry one step closer to its goal.

“It is time to act and shape the future of packaging and consequently the future of our planet,”

Siegwerk demands. The principles, tools and technologies are there, the company says. However, the process must now be accelerated. The report emphasizes that restructuring is not an easy path. However, that does not diminish the necessity of a circular economy.

What are your thoughts on the chance that companies along the value chain will collaborate even more in the future?

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