jeudi 29 juillet 2010

Phtalates dans les emballages : Le Nutella pourrait vous rendre stérile

J’avoue être un amateur invétéré de Nutella, j’en mange tous les jours. Mais cette nouvelle a de quoi inquiéter. Mais qu’attend donc Ferrero pour changer son emballage?

Dans un reportage diffusé, ce mardi, sur Arte, on apprend que le Nutella contient du PEHP, le phtalate le plus dangereux. La substance migre, à chaque fois, de l'emballage dans le produit, affirme dans ce documentaire le Dr Marike Kolossa-Gehring, toxicologue à l'Office fédéral allemand de l'environnement, responsable d'une étude sur le sujet.Lors de ces analyses, une forte concentration de DEHP, le phtalate considéré comme le plus dangereux, a été détecté dans les tartines de Nutella.

Une présence confirmée par le producteur même de cette pâte à tartiner, mais en "quantité inoffensive", affirme Ferrero. Il faudrait, selon le groupe italien, manger des quantités énormes de Nutella pour que des risques de stérilité apparaissent.

Les experts sont unanimes : les phtalates agissent comme un leurre hormonal et provoquent principalement des dérèglements hormonaux. La stérilité chez les hommes en est un exemple (il y a de plus en plus de cas en Europe). Ce "poison" agit même avant la naissance, chez la femme enceinte, nous dit-on.

En 2008, des chercheurs de l’Inserm ont ainsi démontré expérimentalement, en reproduisant in vitro le développement d’un testicule, que les phtalates étaient «délétères pour la mise en place du potentiel reproducteur masculin dans l’espèce humaine». Dans les pays industrialisés, on estime actuellement qu’un homme produit deux fois moins de spermatozoïdes que son grand-père n’en produisait au même âge.

La législation européenne interdit l’utilisation des phtalates dans les jouets depuis janvier 2007, à la suite de leur classification comme «toxiques pour la reproduction» par la Commission européenne. En France, la députée UMP Valérie Boyer a déposé début juillet une proposition de loi visant à interdire les phtalates à l’hôpital: les dispositifs médicaux à destination des femmes enceintes, des prématurés, des nourrissons et des enfants pourraient être débarrassés de ces produits chimiques.

Une autre étude menée par l'Office fédéral de l'environnement montre également le danger que cela représente chez les jeunes enfants. Sur 600 enfants examinés, 100% d'entre eux présentaient des traces de phtalates dont cinq importants. Chez 20% d'entre eux, cette présence était en "quantité critique", autrement dit toxique.

Notons que le Nutella n'est pas le seul produit dans lequel on retrouve ces phtalates, on en retrouve dans certains paquets de bonbons, dans les bouteilles de coca-cola et même dans certains laits bios. Mais ce sont aussi et surtout les produits venant d'Asie qui sont pointés du doigt.

Sources: RTBF - 20 minutes

lundi 26 juillet 2010

Global Corrugated Board Market to See 5% Growth to 2015

The global corrugated board packaging market is forecast to grow to 98 million tonnes in 2015, a new study by Pira International reveals. According to the study, the sector is to grow by a CAGR of nearly 5% between 2010 and 2015, with the highest expansion rates forecast in Brasil, Russia, India, China (the BRIC countries) and Poland.
Actual consumption of corrugated board was 77 million tonnes in 2009, with an exconverter value of almost $82 billion. Asia was 44% of total corrugated board production, China was almost 25% and the US was 20%. Pira expects the overall market to rise 1.2% in 2010 to 78 million tonnes. For the period to 2015 the outlook is more positive with a forecast CAGR of 4.7%, taking the market to 98 million tonnes in 2015.
Pira expects the growth rate to vary by country. "Over the short term, we forecast that developed markets will show slight declines in consumption. At the same time we believe that India, China, Russia, Poland and Brazil offer the most compelling growth prospects in the five years to come", says Adam Page, Head of Editorial at Pira.
More than 60% of corrugated board is used to package non-food products. The largest single end-use sector is the electrical goods market. Processed food is 25% of the total demand and all food is just under 40%. Pira expects the strongest prospects will be found in personal and household care products, glassware, electrical goods and chemicals. Processed food will be 25% of incremental volume, over 5 million tonnes of additional demand between 2010 and 2015. In food markets, the BRIC countries - Brazil, Russia, India and China - offer the most exciting growth prospects, along with Poland and Brazil; forecast incremental demand for 2010-15 is 7 million tonnes and China will take 4 million tonnes.

The key drivers to affect the corrugated board industry in 2010-2015 include:
  • The economic situation: countries with faster growing economies will also see more growth in their corrugated board markets.
  • The changing characteristics of the consumer market, e.g. the growing demand for convenience foods and fast foods, which require special types of packaging.
  • The development of online shopping around the world, which will stimulate demand for simple packaging made of corrugated board.
  • The pressure from the market on product manufacturers to use environmentally friendly packaging, resulting in, among others, the invention of new corrugated board coatings.
  • The trend of lightweighting, which will drive down market volume. 

samedi 24 juillet 2010

Wal-Mart RFID tags: between economical benefits and privacy concerns

After sustainability, Wal-Mart addresses traceability by adopting RFID tags.

Starting next month, the retailer will place removable "smart tags" on individual garments that can be read by a hand-held scanner. Wal-Mart workers will be able to quickly learn, for instance, which size of Wrangler jeans is missing, with the aim of ensuring shelves are optimally stocked and inventory tightly watched. If successful, the radio-frequency ID tags will be rolled out on other products at Wal-Mart's more than 3,750 U.S. stores.

Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) offers a number of potential benefits: traceability, inventory management, labour saving costs, security and promotion of quality and safety. However this technology raises privacy concerns.

Wal-Mart is demanding that suppliers add the tags to removable labels or packaging instead of embedding them in clothes, to minimize fears that they could be used to track people's movements. It also is posting signs informing customers about the tags.
I share with you the prescient story published in Page One of the Wall Street Journal and the Opinion of Philip Yam, chief news editor of Scientific American.

jeudi 22 juillet 2010

Benzophenone from packaging taints Italian couscous

German safety authorities have seized tonnes of couscous from Italy that were contaminated after the chemical benzophenone leached from the packaging.

Higher than permitted levels of the chemical were detected in 15,620 cartons of the foodstuff, the Federal Office of Consumer Protection and Food Safety (BVL) told Some 7.8 tonnes of the product were immediately withdrawn by retailers and wholesalers after the problem was discovered by official inspections.

On July 13, Germany notified the Rapid Alert System for Food and Feed (RASFF) that levels of the chemical reaching 1559 µg/mg had been detected in the couscous imported from Italy,


Benzophenone and 4-methylbenzophenone (4-MBP) are used in food packaging as initiators for printing inks cured by UV radiation. Due to their volatility they can migrate through the packaging to the food if there is no functional barrier, said the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA).

The substances were a cause of Europe-wide concern last year after Germany and Belgium reported the chemicals had leached into breakfast cereals. In May 2009, EFSA concluded that for adults the estimated exposure from the chemicals in the cereal was unlikely to be a health hazard but that this could not be ruled out for children.

In the wake of the 2009 alert both the European Printing Ink Association and the European Carton Board Manufacturers recommended to their members that printing inks containing 4-MBP and BP were not suitable for printing of food packaging unless a functional barrier is present that blocks the transfer into food also via the gasphase.

The European Commission’s Standing Committee on the Food Chain and Animal Health recommended that food contact materials printed with inks containing benzophenone or 4-MBP should not be brought in contact with foods unless the company could verify the migration into food was below 0.6 mg per kg food.

Vous pouvez consulter ici le dossier sur la migration des composants des encres vers les aliments.

Track-and-trace Technology for Fresh Produce

The last year consumers have been facing large produce safety recall incidents (salmonella and E.coli).

Tomatoes were said to be the culprit, were pointed at, and took the blame, although they (probably) never made anyone sick. And while consumers stayed away from potentially ‘killer tomatoes’, the industry lost a lot of money. Panic leapt from one produce category to another with every new announcement, as neither the FDA nor the industry were able to come up with the source of the disaster.

But tell me, what exactly was the problem? Still, there is no answer, but even without the answer, what is this dreadful debacle teaching us?

In spite of the millions of dollars growers and processors have invested in state-of-the-art clean facilities and HACCP practices – consumers are facing recalls, and left in the dark in terms of information. Which is the brand of tomatoes that can be trusted to be safe? Where is the information that tells consumers from where the produce is originated. Brand identity with additional product information would be a good thing.

This leads to brand-protection technologies.

mercredi 21 juillet 2010

L'emballage qui tue

La semaine prochaine Arte diffusera le documentaire : L’Emballage qui tue. Un rendez-vous à ne pas manquer.

Face à la hausse du nombre de substances toxiques dans les aliments, scientifiques et consommateurs donnent l'alerte.

À l'heure où les produits "longue conservation" sont de plus en plus prisés, les clients ne soupçonnent pas l'existence de substances dangereuses dans les emballages hermétiques et dans les aliments avec lesquels ils sont en contact. C'est le cas du Bisphénol A, que l'on trouve dans les contenants en plastique rigide et qui peut provoquer des maladies cardiaques ou affaiblir le système immunitaire. Même risque avec les phtalates utilisés pour plastifier les matériaux servant au conditionnement. Agissant comme des hormones, ils peuvent entraîner la stérilité chez les hommes. Nombre de produits figurent sur la liste des substances interdites par l'Union européenne mais comme celle-ci importe massivement des produits venus d'Asie, où les réglementations ne sont guère restrictives...

lundi 19 juillet 2010

Plastic packaging: threats and eco-friendly alternatives

Plastic Packaging (PE and PP) : shortages and rising prices

The British Plastics Federation has joined European colleagues to warn of the threat to the sector of raw material shortages and rising prices.

BPF director general Peter Davis said that while this situation was affecting the entire sector, packaging manufacturers were feeling it most due to the availability of polyethylene and polypropylene.

HDPE price increase

In the 12 months to May, the euro price of high-density polyethylene for blow-moulding rose by more than 30%, the BPF said.

Polypropylene rose by 50% for the same period.

The BPF said the situation was due to the faster than expected economic recovery and the surge in Chinese demand in particular.

Reduced European reduction

European plastics production is also set to reduce – cracker capacity in the EU is forecast to fall by 26% in the next five years. The trend is towards production in the Middle and Far East.

Peter Davis said: "It is extremely important that the end customer buying and using plastic products, whether food retailers or car manufacturers, realise the very real pressures that our processing members are under and reflect this sympathetically in negotiations with suppliers.

Paper or Plastic?

Conscientious consumers going about their busy days eating, working, shopping and cooking are faced with many little decisions that can have a cumulative impact on the environment or their health.

We like to believe we're making the best choices, but we often don't have the resources or time to really check it out.

The Tribune recently compiled a list of consumer dilemmas from readers and staff, then consulted the experts, crunched the numbers and considered different angles to come up with some answers.

Purac starts project to produce lactic acid from papermaking waste streams

Purac has signed a contract to participate in a consortium that will develop a process to produce feedstock from cellulosic waste derived from the pulp and paper industry. This feedstock is expected to be usable for production of lactic acid. The other partners in the program are Crown Van Gelder N.V., a paper producing company, and Bumaga B.V., a development center in the paper and board industry. The project is part of the Dutch Biorefinery program and partially funded by the Dutch Ministries of Economic Affairs and Agriculture, Nature and Food Quality.

vendredi 16 juillet 2010

Echo-Responsable: Propager la voi(x)e de l'éco-responsabilité

Nouveau venu dans la blogosphère au Québec : Echo-responsable. C’est un blog crée par une doctorante de l’université Laval. Il a pour objet de discuter des enjeux de l’éco-responsabilité, de vous présenter l’intérêt des démarches éco-responsables pour les entreprises, les collectivités et les municipalités.

« A l’image de l’écho qui se propage, ce blog se propose de contribuer à sa mesure à la diffusion de l’éco-responsabilité, un concept prometteur aux applications très concrètes ouvrant la voie vers une société plus durable», mentionne Aurélie Le Gars sur la page d’accueil de son blog.

Bienvenue Aurélie et longue vie à ton blog.

mardi 13 juillet 2010

Compound in Kellogg cereal packaging identified: hydrocarbon

When Kellogg Co. pulled about 28 million cereal boxes from store shelves last month, the company said only that an "off-flavor and smell" coming from the packaging could cause nausea and diarrhea. But the culprit behind the recall is a class of chemicals now making news in the Gulf of Mexico: hydrocarbons, a byproduct of oil.

“Kellogg Company has concluded its investigation into the off smells present in the package liners in some of its cereals,” said company spokeswoman Adaire Putnam. “Working with external experts in medicine, toxicology, public health, chemistry and food safety, we identified elevated levels of hydrocarbons, including methyl naphthalene, normally found in the paraffin wax and film in the liners.”

This specific wax is commonly used as a protective coating for foods including cheese, raw fruits and vegetables, and are approved by the FDA, she said.

However, the company did not supply information relating to the exact levels of the chemical that were responsible for sickening a number of consumers – only saying they were not present in harmful levels.

“We have verified that the elevated levels of hydrocarbons are not present at harmful levels,” added Putnam. “We are working with our supplier to ensure that this situation does not happen again.”

lundi 12 juillet 2010

Stand-up pouch: A package that can stand and deliver

Stand-up pouches provide form, function and convenience. They are an innovative marketing approach to stimulate the sales of a stagnant brand or increase the acceptance and success of a new product introduction.

I share with you an interesting article of Sterling Anthony pulished in Packaging World Magazine.

The stand-up pouch (hereafter, the pouch) has lately become the darling of both brand owners and retailers alike. Applications include food & beverage, yard & garden, home improvement, fishing & gaming, cosmetics, pharmaceuticals—the list goes on. With so much going for it, the pouch deserves analysis, not just for its applications, but also for its examples about the power of packaging. Restated: what does the pouch stand for?

Standing for protection

The pouch can be constructed from a range of materials, in accordance with a product's protection requirements. From single-material constructions to those incorporating barrier plies (i.e. foil and metallized), pouches can protect against moisture, light, oxygen, aroma loss, odor pick-up, puncture, and abrasion.

As is always the case, protection should be pursued with an eye toward cost. Too much protection can waste money just as surely as too little. Start with thorough knowledge of the product itself. Once product knowledge is converted into protection requirements, it makes sense to consider whether those requirements can be fulfilled by stock pouches rather than pricier custom designs. Stock is available in various sizes and constructions. If custom is determined to be the way to go, be aware that protection is a function of materials and of gauge, and a balance between the two is the way to achieve optimal cost-efficiency.

Standing for communication

Regarding shelf impact, the bottom gusset that enables the pouch to stand gives it a leg up, so to speak, on non-freestanding flexible packaging. It also allows the pouch to compete against rigid packaging. Additionally beneficial is the geometry of the pouch: front and back panels make up the vast majority of the total area, providing twin billboards for carrying product communication and for conveying brand image.

Keep in mind that elements to be considered range beyond colors, depictions, and text. Shape is important, too. Instead of the conventionally-paneled pouch, the brand owner can choose a customized die-cut shape. It carries a cost premium, which should be weighed against the brand-building potential of such customization.

Should the brand owner order printed pouches or unprinted ones and afterwards apply labels? Printed is better at communicating a quality, upscale brand image. Moreover, the quantities at which printing becomes economically justified are modest and well within the reach of even small companies. As such, no company needlessly should forego the printed option, given its ability to add punch to communications.

As for printing method, there are two to speak of: flexography and rotogravure, requiring investments in plates and cylinders, respectively. Flexography (traditionally the cheaper) yields credible results but those from rotogravure are sharper. The decision comes down to considerations and trade-offs, based on desired shelf impact.

Unprinted areas can communicate, too, especially when there is an advantage to being able to view the product. In that circumstance, a clear pouch or one with a "window" can be the answer, provided the product is not subject to damage from exposure to light.

Regardless of printing method, take advantage of the time-saving opportunities made possible by the computer age. These days, artwork can be developed, sent, evaluated, and approved, digitally, using programs (Adobe, for example) in combination with conveyances as simple as an e-mail attachment.

Standing for convenience

Retailers prize the convenience of easy stocking that the pouch provides. Shelves can be stocked speedily, without the annoying slowdown of packages toppling or of having to position non-standing packages inside a display rack. Some products are meant to be displayed on peg racks, so consider designing the pouch with a peg hook or hole at the top.

As for the consumer, the convenience of uprightness carries over to the cabinet, refrigerator, counter, table, ground, work surface—wherever. Beyond the feature that gives the pouch its name are other conveniences. Ease-of-opening is one, in that the pouch can embody a notch at the top for tear-opening. For larger sizes, where contents won't be consumed in one use, there's the resealable zipper. And for even larger sizes, handles (either attached or die-cut) can be incorporated for ease-of-transport.

Standing for sustainability?

As for sustainability, the pouch has pluses and minuses. On the plus side is the pouch's lighter weight relative to rigid packages. That advantage is parlayed into savings in transportation costs most notably; and since the pouches are stored flat, warehousing space savings also accrue. Also citable are savings in fork-truck operating costs because more empty pouches can be handled per trip than with rigid packages.

On the minus side, the pouch is vulnerable to criticism for its use of plastic. Furthermore, a pouch that is a lamination can be decried for not being readily recyclable or reusable. Okay, no package is perfect. More instructive than that cliché is that the pouch is an example of the priorities that often rule in these types of evaluations; namely, functionality and convenience can go a long way in countering alleged deficiencies relative to greenness.

Standing in the wings

In forecasting the future of the pouch, one can start with its compatibility with products across a wide range of characteristics: liquid, powder, granular, particulate, and discrete shapes. As such, brand-owners from a variety of industries and product categories, looking for a proven way to differentiate, will consider the pouch. The rate of adoption will accelerate with advances on the machinery front, as increased filling and sealing speeds make the pouch even more attractive.

Another impetus will be the growing ranks of contract packagers equipped to run the pouch, providing production options. Brand-owners can satisfy test markets and new launches, for example, while meeting speed-to-market requirements and postponing capital investment until it's economically justified.

In summary, for all the reasons given herein and for those not mentioned due to space limitations, the pouch will continue to experience a respectable rate of growth and evolution. At least that's how it looks from where I stand.

L’emballage souffre d’un déficit d’image

Premium Beauty News - Le problème de l’emballage c’est d’abord un déficit d’image ? Les problèmes environnementaux effacent les avantages en termes de protection et de conservation des produits ?

Michel Fontaine, nouveau Président du Conseil National de l’Emballage - C’est tout le problème, précisément. Et c’est sans doute là où le rôle du Conseil National de l’Emballage prend tout son sens. C’est, depuis le départ, sa vocation. Mes prédécesseurs ont fait un travail remarquable d’analyse technique et de rapports des différents enjeux, en particulier en matière de prévention et de réduction à la source. À partir de là, il faut repartir à la conquête du consommateur en équilibrant l’image négative des déchets d’emballages par les multiples qualités et avantages des emballages avant et pendant la consommation. Il faut aussi expliquer la « durabilité » des emballages et les efforts continus de l’ensemble de la filière pour l’améliorer sans cesse. Enfin, il faut inscrire cette démarche dans une vision européenne car les problèmes et les acteurs sont majoritairement européens.

Premium Beauty News - Car il y a toujours autant d’idées fausses concernant l’emballage ?

Michel Fontaine - C’est vrai que la profession dans son ensemble accuse un certain déficit d’image auprès du grand public. Sait-on suffisamment que le plastique dans l’emballage ne représente que 1,5 % de notre consommation de pétrole ! Sait-on que les sinistrés du tremblement de terre en Haïti ont été en grande partie sauvés par l’apport massif d’eau minérale conditionnée en bouteilles plastiques ?

Lire ici l’intégrale de l’entrevue

Packaging of the week: Evolv, an innovative initiative to eliminate PVC clamshells

Evolv was created to raise the bar on entry-level tools with better overall quality and durability and superior ergonomics. Evolv was created to appeal to today’s DIY handyman/handywoman. The corrugated packaging is a response to an internal initiative to eliminate PVC clamshells. We designed the packaging so that it was recyclable and could be easily produced by packaging vendors anywhere on the planet.

dimanche 11 juillet 2010

Pürbloom : Un emballage innovant et pratique pour conserver la fraîcheur des fruits

FruitSymbiose, une entreprise en démarrage de la région de Chaudière-Appalaches (Québec), a mis au point une pellicule d'emballage comestible qui respire et qui permet de conserver les fruits frais pendant 25 jours. Le procédé est un dérivé de l'amidon et d'une algue qui sera mis sur le marché sous la marque de commerce Pürbloom.

Pour l'instant, la compagnie offrira des bleuets, des raisins rouges, des pommes vertes et des ananas coupés. Geneviève Girard, la fondatrice de FruitSymbiose, affirme qu'on ne doit pas mélanger les fruits frais dans un même emballage, chacun ayant des propriétés de conservation bien différentes.

A propos de FruitSymbiose
FruitSymbiose possède un laboratoire et un établissement de production dans la région de Québec. Une première gamme de produits à base de fruits frais sera mise en marché en 2010 sous la marque Fruitti & Confetti. Ces collations de fruits frais sont conditionnées individuellement à l'aide de la technologie Pürbloom. Elles se présentent avec une touche de "confetti", des fruits séchés à saupoudrer qui accompagnent la portion de fruits pour le plaisir des enfants. FruitSymbiose a remporté deux prix lors du 12ème Gala des Grands Prix nationaux du Concours québécois en entrepreneuriat.

mercredi 7 juillet 2010

Report: A Global Language for Packaging and Sustainability

The Global Packaging Project (GPP) has published a first report on its work to deliver a common language for packaging sustainability that sets out a number of indicators and metrics for improved dialogue.

The Consumer Goods Forum's sustainability group that is sponsored by Tesco and Unilever is running GPP to "deliver a common framework and measurement system for better decision making on packaging and sustainability".

mardi 6 juillet 2010

Seattle: Styrofoam Ban Leads to Packaging Changes

Seattle's ban on #6 polystyrene trays (commonly known as Styrofoam) at restaurants and grocery stores went into effect on July 1.

Seattle is officially the first market area in North America to require single-use food service packaging be either compostable or recyclable. Similar regulations for single-use food service packaging are in a testing phase in San Francisco and already planned in Toronto. As a result packaging producers packaging companies, packaging suppliers, and the packaging industry come up with an innovative and eco-friendly packaging solution.

Corn based compostable meat tray
Cryovac® NatureTRAY™ Foam Tray

lundi 5 juillet 2010

Pack News of the Week : sustainable, active and intelligent packaging

A new report that sets out for the first time a common language and metrics for sustainable packaging will help reduce its carbon footprint, cut costs and boost the industry’s public image, said the Global Packaging Project (GPP).

The study, relased under the umbrella of the Consumer Goods Forum, said it aims to deliver a common language and measurement system to “enable more informed dialogue between trading partners about the relationship between packaging and sustainability”.
“Well-designed packaging will meet the requirements of the product while minimising the economic, social and environmental impacts of both the product and the package”, said the report.
Packaging plays a critical economic, environmental and sustainable role by protecting products. Reducing packing should only be done if it maintains or reduces the impacts of the packed products and optimal performance is achieved when both are “designed together from inception”.

Consumer needs for active & intelligent food packaging?

It is interesting to read that the focus of active and intelligent (A&I) packaging has shifted from “manufacturer concerns” such as shelf-life and spoilage to “consumer concerns such as freshness, quality and information”, according to recently published research.

The report – ‘The Future of Active and Intelligent Packaging in Food and Drinks’ said that industry leaders had identified “freshness indicators as the most important innovations in the field over the next five years. A development on quality was listed as the next most important field followed by temperature and time indicators.”

Demand for corrugated board returns to 2007 levels

Corrugated board manufacturers have reported that packaging volumes are returning to pre-recession levels, thanks in a large part to the stability of the food sector.

According to annual statistics from the European Manufacturers of Corrugated Packaging (FEFCO), volumes in the first few months of 2010 have so far exceeded results from 2007, before the financial crisis hit.

Processed food brands are under pressure to cut back on unnecessary packaging but Angelika Christ, secretary general of FEFCO does not expect this drive to have a negative impact on demand and claimed the industry is in fact profiting from it.

He said: “Thanks to our closed recycling loop, we can only really win when the question of sustainability comes up.”

Corrugated board is usually used as a mono-material and can therefore be recycled easily. Each fibre can be reused about seven times before becoming unsuitable for further recycling

jeudi 1 juillet 2010

Packaging Materials: Crunch time for food packs

Very interesting article published on Packaging News.

Recent scares and product recalls have made the safety of inks used in food packaging a hot issue. Jill Park looks at the problem and asks if low-migration technology is the answer.

Low-migration inks have been around for years. But it wasn’t until two big migration scares shook the industry that converters really started to sit up and pay attention to the issue. First, in 2007, Tetra Pak and Nestlé were forced to recall baby milk packaging because traces of Isopropylthioxanthone (ITX) were found to have migrated to the product. It was later discovered that this had probably happened when the freshly printed material was rolled ready for converting, thus transferring traces of ITX onto the other side of the board.

The next high-profile case to arise found 4-methybenzophenome (4MPB) migrating from the outside of a cereal carton, through the plastic bag containing the cereal to the product inside. After some commotion, the European Food Safety Authority (EFTA) ruled there were no health risks from short-term consumption of 4MPB, but that was not before a migration alert through Rapid Alert System for Food and Feed (RASFF) in the Benelux region.

Informing the industry

Sun Chemical’s Stephenson is keen to emphasise that all aspects of the supply chain must be engaged to ensure migration is avoided. "You have to have joined-up communication and thinking so that everybody is designing that packaging for the end purpose intended."
"The ink maker can recommend an ink for a specific substrate and press, but has no knowledge, usually, of the foodstuff to be packed or the pack design so it lies with the pack designers and printer converters to determine what is or isn’t an appropriate ink or coating for the packaging application, low migration or not," says Stephenson.

Vous pouvez consulter ici le dossier sur la migration des composants des encres vers les aliments.