Wales-based sustainable packaging company, Transcend Packaging, has announced it is entering a strategic partnership with fellow innovator BioPaxium Technologies, which was recognised as a top materials technology company in the UK.
The result of six years’ worth of intensive research and development, BioPaxium has developed extensive knowledge of advanced moulded fibre technologies which are applicable to a broad range of market segments. Unlike traditional moulded fibre such as egg cartons and cup carriers, advanced moulded fibre technology can be applied to intricate geometries allowing for broader replacement of thermoformed plastic.
The product can be engineered to be resilient to temperatures in excess of 200oC for a prolonged period in both a microwave and conventional oven or alternatively suitable for chilled or frozen products, such as chilled and frozen ready-meals. The products are designed to be recycled or home composted providing an enhanced sustainability profile.
Initially, Transcend will offer a range of lids, cups and trays to the food service market. In 2022, Transcend plans a full launch of a broader product range to provide solutions for plastics replacement to the food service, food and beverage manufacturing, health and beauty and the fast-moving consumer goods markets.
Transcend will produce its moulded fibre in Europe using a low-carbon technology. Currently the majority of moulded fibre sold in Europe comes from East Asia which is often produced using energy from coal. Due to the significant energy consumption and transit distances involved, the carbon footprint of these products is not aligned with emerging corporate sustainability objectives. By producing in Europe using low-carbon technology and minimising transit distance for European customers, Transcend aims to provide the most sustainable moulded fibre available on the European market.
An additional advantage of moulded fibre is that it allows for the use of non-traditional fibres (such as wheat straw or miscanthus) either as the sole fibre base or in a mixture depending upon client requirements. By using non tree-based fibres, materials can be utilised that were often classed as agricultural waste to create moulded fibre products suitable for composting, helping create carbon rich soil that can be used to sustain our agricultural production into the future – a truly circular product.
The partnership will see BioPaxium Technologies license its intellectual property and transfer its production to Transcend Packaging. BioPaxium will assist Transcend with new product introduction and delivering the next generation of circular economy solutions via moulded fibre to meet exponential market demand. Peter Davies, former CEO at BioPaxium, joins Transcend to lead the new moulded fibre division.
With pending legislative and regulatory proposals across both the UK and EU such as extended producer responsibility, plastics taxation and more, moulded fibre provides a more sustainable option for many applications. Moulded fibre is a strong format to assist brands in reducing their regulatory exposure whilst providing a sustainable product at the end of its useful life.
Lorenzo Angelucci, CEO of Transcend Packaging, said:
“We are pleased to welcome the innovative expertise of BioPaxium Technologies to our team. Rightfully, their expertise has earned them a reputation as a thought leader in both product design and quality. We can’t wait to bring significant moulded fibre innovations to market together.”
“As we look to scale into new products and continue innovating in the sustainable packaging market space, we saw an opportunity to strengthen our team with additional expertise and truly innovative materials technology. We believe that moulded fibre will be at the forefront of change as brands look to make their packaging more sustainable and Transcend intends to be a significant contributor toward that process.”
Despite being in operation for a little over three years, Transcend has already won a number of major contracts with high street brands. This includes supplying eco-friendly paper straws to the likes of McDonald’s and KFC, unveiled the first on-pack bendable straw in the UK for juice brand Ribena, and recently opened an additional production facility in Europe, which is based in Italy.
BioPaxium Technologies CEO, Peter Davies said:
“We are delighted to be joining this strategic partnership with Transcend Packaging. Transcend has emerged as the European market leader for paper-straw production with a strong portfolio of major multi-national clients. We look forward to helping Transcend bring new moulded fibre innovations to market while expanding to new markets across Europe and beyond.”