Production of fibre-based pet food bags

Pet food can be a challenge to pack. It requires high levels of resistance to grease and moisture, the strength needed to carry weights of up to 20kg, and the capability to resist external weather conditions. Until now, plastic laminated paper has been usually used to provide the required level of strength and barrier qualities.

Working in partnership with Fiorini Packaging, the specialist manufacturer of industrial paper sacks, UPM Specialty Papers set out to create a new alternative in the form of a recyclable, fibre-based sack.

Giovanni Fiorini, Fiorini President & CEO stated:

We wanted to find a solution without using plastic laminates that is PFAS free. The answer came in a unique composition that incorporates our Moistshield technology in a double layer of paper on the inside, supported by an additional UPM AsendoTM Pro barrier paper layer on the outside for added grease resistance.

UPM Asendo Pro is a recyclable, coated two side barrier paper that provides excellent grease resistance, medium moisture resistance, and a mineral oil barrier. It is PFAS free, safe for direct contact with food, and suitable for a wide range of end-uses from dry and greasy foods and bakery goods to frozen food packaging.

Fiorini Moistshield, meanwhile, is a high-tech solution developed in the company’s own R&D labs to offer water-repellent properties without the need for plastic laminates. A high surface tension allows water to slip away rather than being retained by the paper. This offers two advantages: a greater barrier effect compared to a standard paper sack with plastic film, extending the shelf life of the product inside. And because it is recyclable, it offers a sustainable alternative to conventional solutions.

Marco Tramontano, sales director Italy at UPM Specialty Papers explained:

We realised that, by uniting our technologies, we could create a new paper-based sack that could offer similar levels of moisture and grease resistance as a conventional sack with a plastic laminate layer, or even higher. By using UPM Asendo Pro as an additional high grease resistance barrier for the external layer, this innovation has boosted existing MoistShield properties while also offering an excellent print surface.

The resulting recyclable, fibre-based animal nutrition sack can be recycled in existing fibre recycling streams, while also offering the strength and resistance to moisture and grease associated with plastic laminates. It is now available to order from Fiorini.