Our aseptic carton portfolio offers customers unrivalled flexibility across a wide range of products. In 2022, we expanded our packaging portfolio through the acquisitions of Evergreen Asia and Scholle IPN, allowing us to serve more customers and consumers across more categories.
Serving demand for milk in China
The acquisition of the Evergreen Asia business enables us to serve the entire Chinese milk market, building on our established expertise in liquid dairy. Per capita consumption of milk in China is rising, and chilled milk is a popular choice among more affluent consumers in urban areas. Many of these consumers drink milk at breakfast or another mealtime, often in family-sized packs. This opens up a new market segment for us, as our aseptic cartons in China are largely single-serve and for on-the-go consumption.
A broader universe of opportunity
The spouted pouch and bag-in-box solutions acquired with Scholle IPN are enabling us to reach more customers and consumers globally through more channels – and to pack a much greater variety of products. In doing so, we aim to offer the most sustainable substrates across categories and product sizes.
Spouted pouches are used for small quantities of liquid of up to 500 ml and are ideal for contents such as baby food, fruit purées, yoghurts and puddings. They are easy to carry around so that hungry infants and toddlers can be fed whenever needed. The structure of the pouch and spout enables the last drops of liquid to be squeezed out, reducing food waste.
Bag-in-box is suitable for quantities ranging from 2 to 1,300 litres and therefore taps into markets that would be inaccessible for carton. It greatly expands our food service presence, taking us into beverage concentrates, milk shakes and ice cream for fast-food and dine-in restaurants.
These outlets are supplied with the aid of our specialised dispenser connections, which offer the customer convenience and security, and underpin longstanding customer relationships. In the industrial segment, we serve large food and vegetable processors, providing them with a safe, high-quality package that protects their valuable crops as they are transported across the world from grower to processor.
Sustainability at the heart of our portfolio
Sustainability will continue to be a key focus area across our enlarged portfolio. We have succeeded in reducing the quantity of material needed for our aseptic cartons while maintaining their protective qualities. Bag-in-box has been steadily replacing rigid plastic: for water, it can represent an 86% reduction in plastic use compared with a premium PET bottle. Ours was the first bag-in-box package recognised as 100% recyclable by the Association of Plastic Recyclers.
APR-recognised recyclable bag-in-box
Our mono-material pouches are fully recyclable and can be formed at speed using our patented induction sealing technology, providing a cost-efficient alternative to multi-material pouches.
Combined with our aseptic carton in-line sterilisation expertise, we plan to industrialise the output of high-speed aseptic mono-material spouted pouches.
The Scholle IPN expertise in mono-material structures and barrier technology will accelerate our aluminium-free journey in aseptic carton, and we have a line of sight to achieve cost parity with standard aluminium structures.
This journey began in 2010 with the world’s first aluminium-layer-free carton and has continued apace with further innovations, including the first carton made entirely from renewable materials. Today, these formats are used by a number of food and beverage companies who want to underline the sustainability of their products. In order to enable mass-market adoption of aluminium-layer-free structures, we need to develop cost-efficient barrier films to replace aluminium. Scholle IPN’s mono-material technologies are a major stepping stone in this direction. And as we increase the fibre content of our cartons, a fibre-based pouch could become a reality.