The Journal reported that Nestle has recently begun using coated paper packets for its Sure! Snack bars and Nesquik cocoa powder, instead of traditional plastic and aluminum packaging. The new plastic coating used dissolves within the paper-recycling, setting them apart from common paper cubs and fast food boxes that use tightly-bonded plastic liners — often rendering them unrecyclable.
Similarly, Unilever has started packaging one brand of ice cream in a paper carton coated with cornstarch, which helps protect the contents during freezing and moist circumstances. The company said it can be recycled at paper mills or industrially composed.
While these are interesting innovations, the Journal noted that similar examples are few-and-far-between, as challenges of shelf life and local weather present major obstacles to widespread sustainable packaging. For Nestle’s paper packaged Nesquik, it halved the per bag quantity due to the reduced shelf life compared to plastic. That’s besides the fact that paper is harder to fold and more easily torn than plastic, combined with added deforestation that could result from more reliance on it.
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