When the Koehler Paper Group presented the first packaging made of the innovative Koehler NexPlus Seal barrier paper at the FachPack trade fair in September 2019, the new production line 8 was on the verge of being commissioned. Now the Black Forest based family company has taken a giant leap forward.
With the successful commissioning of the paper and coating machine in October 2019, a construction project at Koehler came full circle. In a record timeframe of just two and half years, the company planned and built a new production line. This puts Koehler in the right place at the right time. Developments on the part of brand owners aimed at sustainable packaging solutions are gaining pace.
The demand for innovative, sustainable packaging solutions increased significantly in 2019. What the experts predicted as having a longer timescale has now happened much faster. ‘We are seeing brands making efforts towards putting sustainable solutions on the market. This is very much in line with our own developments. We have adapted to this extremely dynamic market effect and have made implementing it on the new machine a priority,’ said Eckhard Kallies, division manager Flexible Packaging Paper at Koehler. The company has been working on concepts for some time and is implementing them together with development partners. ‘Our vision is to offer sustainable paperbased packaging solutions wherever it makes sense to do so. This vision is already becoming a reality,’ explained Eckhard.
In addition to flexible packaging paper, Koehler also produces the innovative Blue4est thermal paper on its new paper and coating machine. Like the Koehler NexPlus line of barrier paper, Blue4est is also a truly disruptive product. It is one of the world’s first thermal paper that has been approved for direct food contact and works entirely without chemical colour developers.
There are challenges to face in converting from plastic to paper, particularly in further processing, because paper behaves differently to film. However, numerous tests on packaging machines are showing that the changeover can work very well.