|Uflex focusing on Resource Optimized Packaging for Essential Indian Staples|
India’s largest multinational flexible packaging materials and Solution Company Uflex in an endeavour to extend the very use of flexible packaging is particularly paying a lot of emphasis on developing resource optimized packaging for essential staples like Pulses, Wheat Flour, Sugar, Salt and Oil.
Talking more about this initiative, Mr. Jeevaraj Pillai, Joint President, Packaging and New Product Development, Uflex Limited pointed out, “Flexible Packaging sector in India will get the real boost when high volume (bulk) commodity food items like Pulses, Wheat-Flour, Sugar, Salt and Oil are marketed in packaged form. In India, almost 80-85% of unbranded food products are still sold loose without pre-designated packaging. With steadily increasing demand from urban consumers for branded high volume commodity food items, we are now getting a lot of enquiries from popular food brands for developing cost-effective packaging particularly for the essential staples category. We have recently developed a 2 ply laminated packaging for wheat flour comprising a specialised Polyester(PET)/ specialised Polyethylene (PE) structure.
Two rather dichotomous situations had to be addressed in manufacturing this packaging solution for Wheat-Flour (in the 5 Kg Segment). In order to restrict the pricing within 2.5-3% of the total MRP of the 5 kg Wheat Flour Pack, we had to optimally downgauge the packaging. Downgauging cannot come at the cost of functionalities and strength of the pack. Therefore to ensure that the wheat-flour packaging is sturdy enough with good mechanical properties to withstand the weight of the product being packed as well as to sustain the rough supply chain conditions, we adopted a three-pronged approach. We modified both the Polyester Film and the Sealant PE Layer to optimize the overall characteristics of the packaging. Both the layers were rendered special high dart impact resistant to pass 5 drops from 1.2 m height as per the ASTM standards. We were able to reduce the thickness of the PE by almost 38% which substantively downgauged the overall packaging. This reduction makes the packaging light-weight/resource optimized and far more sustainable than its erstwhile version.
The third and the most important modification has been registered nano-perforation on the laminate for which we installed a new machine with the most contemporary software. No other flexible packaging company in India has this capability.
The nano-perforation helps dispelling the air while filling the flour inside the pack and also ensures that no infestation by mites and other micro-organisms takes place resulting in spoilage of the wheat-flour packed inside. In fact, the perforations are designed just enough for removing the air and restricting the passage of mites. Further, the nano-perforation on the pack also imparts anti-skid properties to the bag paving way for easy stacking all through the supply chain.”
Expressing delight over the new development, Mr. Ashok Chaturvedi, Chairman & Managing Director, Uflex Limited said, “Resource optimized packaging for bulk commodities, particularly high consumption commodity food items as the name suggests, entails significant reduction at source. Since the target market consumption of this product category in a country like India is fairly large, resource optimized packaging for this segment beholds tremendous potential in overall reduction of polymer consumption. I am glad that my packaging engineers have been able to develop this packaging solution which is light-weight, sustainable and significantly contributes towards extending the use of flexible packaging for this volume driven food category. Considering that the per-capita packaging consumption in India is just about 4.5 kg currently, whereas that for countries like Taiwan, Germany and US is around 19, 50 and 71 kg respectively, resource optimized packaging for essential Indian staples is a tangible and definitive step in making flexible packaging a more popular option in India.”About Uflex
Uflex is India’s largest multinational flexible packaging materials and Solution Company and an emerging global player. Since its inception back in 1985, Uflex has grown from strength to strength to evolve as a truly Indian Multinational with consumers spread across the world. Uflex today has state-of-the-art packaging facilities at multiple locations in India with installed capacity of around 100,000 TPA and has packaging film manufacturing facilities in India, UAE, Mexico Egypt, Poland and USA with cumulative installed capacity in excess of 337,000 TPA.
All Uflex plants are accredited with ISO 9001, 14001, HACCP & BRC certifications. Uflex caters to markets spanning across the globe in over 140 countries like USA, Canada, South American countries, UK and other European Countries, Russia, South Africa, CIS, Asian and African nations. Integrated within its core business profile are allied businesses like Engineering, Cylinders, Holography and Chemicals which further give Uflex a superior edge above competition.
Uflex Limited is also a part of the D&B Global Database and winner of various prestigious national and international awards for its products’ excellence. Uflex offers technologically superior packaging solutions for a wide variety of products such as snack foods, candy and confectionery, sugar, rice & other cereals, beverages, tea & coffee, dessert mixes, noodles, wheat flour, soaps and detergents, shampoos & conditioners, vegetable oil, spices, marinades & pastes, cheese & dairy products, frozen food, sea food, meat, anti-fog, pet food, pharmaceuticals, contraceptives, garden fertilizers and plant nutrients, motor oil and lubricants, automotive and engineering components etc.
Some of Uflex’s clients on the global turf include P&G, PepsiCo; Tata Global; Mondelez, L’ Oreal, Britannia, Haldiram’s, Amul, Kimberly Clark, Ferro Rocher, Perfetti, GSK, Nestle, Agrotech Foods, Coca Cola, Wrigley, Johnson & Johnson among others.