Stora Enso is extending its packaging offering with a new portfolio of bio-based foams from wood. The products are fully recyclable and can be used for protective and thermal packaging. Lightweight wood foams address the need for climate-friendly, renewable and circular cushioning materials in inner packaging. Stora Enso’s offering consists of Fibrease™ by Stora Enso and Papira® by Stora Enso. Both foams come with versatile technical and sustainability properties, and customers can select a suitable foam based on their specific packaging requirements. The foams can be used for protecting fragile goods and are optimal for thermal packaging of temperature sensitive products. Fibrease is commercially available now, while the pilot plant for producing Papira has started operations at the Fors site in Sweden, following the investment announced in August 2020. Fossil-based packaging is a major contributor to pollution, accounting for 40% of the world’s plastics. With Fibrease and Papira, Stora Enso now introduces renewable and climate-friendly alternatives to fossil-based packaging protection. The bio-based foams come from certified wood and are recyclable in paper recycling streams.
In a first for the beverage industry, Crown Bevcan Europe & Middle East, a business unit of Crown Holdings, Inc. (NYSE: CCK) (Crown) (www.crowncork.com), is launching its CrownConnect™ technology in conjunction with FACT – an all-natural sparkling drink. Each can will be marked with a 2D unique scannable code, making FACT beverage cans the first ever to be produced with a unique digital identity.
To this end, Crown has partnered with tech-savvy entrepreneur Olly Bolton, to launch Almond, a blockchain platform that allows consumers to scan a unique hidden product code and rewards them by unlocking tokens that are redeemable for cash. The platform, to be launched in June of this year, will also unlock details of FACT Water’s story, giving unprecedented access to supply chain information and building deeper, trusting relationships with consumers that will ultimately foster brand loyalty.
Crown’s involvement in the project is very much as an enabler of the technology. As well as producing the physical beverage can for FACT Water, on which Almond will be launched, its CrownConnect™ technology provides the 2D codes beneath the tab of the beverage can that facilitate the engagement between consumer (via a scanning application) and brand. The platform, developed in partnership with IoT company EVRYTHNG then comes into effect, intuitively generating rewards and offers based on previous purchases and offering discounts and rewards to users based on their habits and the products they buy.
“The Internet of Things, and specifically blockchain technologies, will continue to drive the way brands interact with consumers and Almond is a very exciting step into this area for the beverage industry, commented Matt Twiss, Marketing and Business Development Director at Crown. “From a brand’s perspective, the value lies in the ability to capture valuable data about when and where customers consume their products. CrownConnect™ technology has been designed specifically to facilitate this level of interaction between brand and consumer and we are proud to be working with innovators such as Olly Bolton and EVRYTHNG to make beverage packaging more interactive and value-added than ever.”
Olly Bolton, Founder of Almond added: “The Almond app will allow users to interact with brands in a new completely way, directly reaping the rewards of their use of the app and pledging their allegiance to brands based on the way they approach transparency and their supply chain. Almond establishes a new type of relationship between brands and consumers: one that is symbiotic and mutually beneficial, giving consumers control and autonomy over the type of brands they buy, while also rewarding their loyalty.”
Almond-enabled cans of FACT Water will be available to buy in the U.K. and selected European countries from the end of June.