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Graham’s Dairy UK’s first: fully recyclable milk cartons with tethered cap

Packaging Solutions Green Solutions

Graham’s Dairy in Scotland is set to become the UK’s first dairy to roll out its fresh milk to retailers in fully recyclable cartons using tethered caps. To achieve this, Graham’s partnered with Elopak and selected the company’s innovative Pure-Pak cartons and Pure-TwistFlip tethered caps.

Graham’s Dairy is bringing out its new style cartons in response to growing consumer concerns around plastic, as well as the EU’s new Single Use Plastic Directive, which is due to come into force in 2023. The Pure-TwistFlip tethered cap is specially designed to remain attached to the carton throughout use and ensure cap and carton are recycled together. The new easy to open cap will be applied to the Graham’s 500 ml carton range, including standard and organic milk, available from more than 800 Sainsbury’s stores.

Elopak’s Pure-Pak cartons have many environmental benefits. They are fully recyclable, where infrastructure is available, and are made with paperboard from sustainable and controlled forestry. The new, tethered Pure-TwistFlip cap with its twist and flip open mechanic ensures that the cap cannot be removed from the carton, while remaining easy to pour and reclose. According to the Marine Conservation Society’s 2021 Great British Beach Clean, plastic pieces remain the most prevalent form of litter on UK beaches with plastic caps and lids being the fourth most common litter item found.

In consumer research carried out by Kantar among fresh milk carton users, Pure-TwistFlip exceeded expectations in all dimensions, and was seen as a good fit for all milk categories. Key features highlighted by participants in the study included ease of opening and pouring, tight fitting, practical, and environmentally friendly. Pure-TwistFlip was judged better than screws caps on all handling aspects, including resealability and ease of handling for children and older people, and showed high purchase intent.

Martin Shaw, Elopak’s market unit manager, UK and Ireland, said: ‘We are delighted that Graham’s Dairy have chosen us as its partner and is using our Pure-Pak cartons and Pure-TwistFlip tethered caps for its milk carton range on sale in Sainsbury’s stores. Consumers have become a lot more knowledgeable when it comes to recycling and plastic reduction, and are demanding packaging that reflects this. Graham’s is now setting the pace in the dairy industry by choosing our solution. Designed to meet regulations, the tethered cap will help to reduce ocean pollution, reduce plastic waste and are easy and convenient to use and recycle.

‘Over the next few years, we expect to see an even greater focus on plastic reduction and carbon reduction across the UK food and beverage industry, by brands, retailers, and packaging suppliers. A lot of progress has been made but there is more to do, and time is of the essence. The overall sustainability drive and the need for customers to waste less mean they need to find readily available fully recyclable options, and Elopak’s solutions specifically fit that brief.’


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