Ascend Performance Materials, the largest fully integrated producer of polyamide 66 resin, announced it signed an agreement to purchase the assets of NCM (Changshu) Co., Ltd., and Tehe Engineering Plastic (Suzhou) Co., Ltd., located in Changshu Yushan High-tech Industrial Park (known as “The Park”), one of the major advanced manufacturing parks in the eastern coastal area of China, 100 kilometers outside of Shanghai. The acquisition gives Ascend a flexible footprint for growth in the region. The company’s master plan includes the expansion of compounding assets at the site along with a global research and development center with a focus on existing applications in the automotive, electrical and electronics, and consumer and industrial areas, as well as new ones in areas such as 3D-printing and high-performance films.
Metsä Board, a leading European producer of premium fresh fibre paperboards, is launching a new eco-barrier paperboard. This new, innovative paperboard with a special barrier treatment is bio-based, recyclable and biodegradable, and developed especially for food service use. On top of the sustainability benefits of this new product it also offers efficiencies in printing and converting.
There is a clear market need to develop paperboards with bio-based barriers as alternatives to fossil-based barriers. The new eco-barrier paperboard, MetsäBoard Pro FSB EB1, is a unique product with a bio-based and biodegradable special barrier treatment that is fluorochemicals-free. The new eco-barrier paperboard can be used with foods requiring grease resistance up to KIT level 5, and the barrier properties can be further improved by adding varnishing layers at the converter. This latter option offers a notable increase in efficiency as the barrier property improvement can be made by applying only one varnishing layer in comparison to paperboards without this special barrier treatment.
A Finnish converter, OffsetKolmio Oy, has been using the new special barrier treated paperboard for a baguette pack used by a Finnish artisan bakery, Huovisen Leipomo. “We were able to reduce the print cost without compromising on the quality or barrier properties of the board. Print machine time for barrier treatment was reduced by 50%, and 65% less varnish was needed thanks to the special barrier treatment of MetsäBoard Pro FSB EB1. In addition, this breathable board keeps its form and preserves the filled baguette well,” confirms Kimmo Jokinen, Managing Director, OffsetKolmio Oy.
MetsäBoard Pro FSB EB1 is a lightweight paperboard and is available in basis weights of 195–290 g/m2 with all layers hard-sized. It enables high-quality printing on both sides and is suitable for offset and flexo printing. The consistent quality of the new paperboard gives excellent convertibility. It is glueable with standard dispersion and hotmelt adhesives.
The new product is safe for direct food contact and it is free of optical brighteners (OBA free). It is available with PEFC™ or FSC© certification. It is fully recyclable with conventional recycling systems.
Mika Joukio, Metsä Board CEO, stated: “Consumption of takeaway food keeps on increasing. This makes recyclability and biodegradability of food service boards even more important. We are very excited about this new eco-barrier paperboard as we see real sustainability and efficiency benefits for our customers. Metsä Board is continuing development work on further innovative barrier solutions.”