Futamura’s Compostable Cunning

Stuart Pritchard March 21, 2017

Futamura has announced that San Francisco-based Alter Eco is using NatureFlex™ packaging film as part of the compostable pouch used for their organic and fair trade quinoas. The pouch meets ASTM D6400 standards for industrial composting, and is made in large part from bio-based materials.

Futamura is the global manufacturing leader of cellulose films for packaging and industrial applications.  NatureFlex™ by Futamura is a family of flexible packaging films that offers an environmentally responsible alternative to traditional petroleum-based plastics. It is certified compostable, made from GMO-free renewable resources, and provides the high barrier needed for many food products. When combined with a compostable sealant layer, the overall structure meets Alter Eco’s performance and sustainability goals.

Since its founding over a decade ago, Alter Eco has been a champion for sustainable practices. Recognised as a top certified Benefit Corporation and one of the first registered Public Benefit Corporations, Alter Eco is dedicated to full-circle sustainability throughout its operations and supply chain through four pillars: sourcing using Fair Trade principles, production of only organic and non-GMO foods, in-setting carbon emissions by means of large-scale reforestation programs in the cooperatives that produce its crops, and creating minimal waste by working towards 100 percent compostable packaging.

The move to sustainable packaging was made following growing consumer demand for stand-up pouches, which is projected to reach 24 billion pouches by 2018. Current pouches on the market are made with multiple layers of plastic, few of which are recyclable and none that are compostable or sustainable. Alter Eco’s new package design was fittingly dubbed Gone4Good™ because it goes back to where it came from when its useful life is over; safely and with zero waste.

“Sustainability is the core of our business, and as a leader in the space we’ve worked tirelessly to pioneer the first compostable pouch that will truly revolutionize the food industry,” said Mathieu Senard, co-founder and co-CEO of Alter Eco. “We’re thrilled to be at the forefront of eco-friendly packaging, and our new pouches give consumers a more sustainable option that doesn’t negatively impact our planet, all with the same convenience of existing food pouches. We’re hopeful that this necessary, good-for-the-planet innovation will encourage other brands to follow suit.”

Much of the work that went into developing the Gone4Good™ pouch was done in collaboration with OSC², a coalition of forward-thinking brands working together to change the face of packaging.

The new pouch was unveiled last spring at the Natural Products Expo in Anaheim, CA, USA.  The natural foods community immediately took notice, as the package was awarded a ‘Nexty’ by New Hope Media for Best Packaging of the show.

Chris Mitchell, Commercial VP-Americas at Futamura, said: “We are proud to be working with forward-thinking brands like Alter Eco.  This packaging innovation is the result of years of research and development, and was possible due to the efforts of many on the Alter Eco team as well as our co-supplier and converter partners.”

Futamura welcomes you to visit them from 4th – 10th May 2017, Hall 9 Stand 9F05 at Interpack, Messe Düsseldorf.