Using compostable and recyclable packaging not only limits the drain on fossil fuels, such as crude oil, but also allows biodegradable substances to enter the supply chain. VPZ has managed to develop compostable tube netting for fruit and vegetables.
Perish the thought – organic potatoes in plastic bags and organic fruit sealed in plastic. What could be worse? Over the past few decades, the packaging industry has been focused on plastic – even for organic produce. However, an increasing number of consumers want to buy their organic vegetables in organic packaging, too. VPZ's compostable Packnatur® tube netting made from beechwood cellulose has been in
use since 2013. Packnatur® cellulose tube netting made from LENZING™ Modal is not only used by Europe's leading supermarket chains and organic fruit and vegetable producers, but is also conquering the international market. This has meant that potatoes, onions, citrus fruits, beetroot and black radishes have been able to benefit from this innovative netting.
There are many factors to be considered when manufacturing environmentally friendly products, including their production and decomposition. In an ideal world, manufacturing uses locally sourced recycled materials as raw materials, putting them to a worthwhile intermediary use before their energy is recovered at the end of their lifecycle. The raw material used in Packnatur® cellulose tube netting is beechwood,
which is recovered from forest thinning in central Europe (one-third from Austria, two-thirds from central Europe, from certified forestry). This is transformed into modal fibres by Lenzing AG – the global market leader in the environmentally friendly manufacture of cellulose fibre – using carbon-neutral processes in line with the strictest environmental standards.
Compared to conventional dyeing, where dye is transferred to the finished fibres, spin-dyed fibres require 64% less water, 90% fewer chemicals, 20% less energy and 62% less heating, while producing 64% less waste water. The pigments are fully integrated in the fibres, rendering them suitable for food use. The production of raw materials does not compete with the production of food, and avoids the need for irrigation or the use of chemicals on farmland. Beechwood forests regenerate naturally and do not need to
be replanted. Forest thinning helps keep forests healthy. Forests preserve the quality of the air we breathe and transform CO2 into oxygen. Transport distances should be kept to a minimum, so that fossil resources are used as little as necessary. The Packnatur® cellulose tube netting by VPZ is biodegradable and HOME COMPOST-certified in Europe and the USA. NATURALLY PROTECTED. The breathable natural nets keep consumers' produce fresher for 2 or 3 days longer and prevent the premature sprouting of potatoes and onions. The packaging is soft to the touch and looks very natural. The net is currently available in the standard colours of white, beige, lemon yellow, red orange, red, bordeaux, green, dark brown and black. The Packnatur® cellulose net is compostable, allowing it to re-enter the food life cycle. Food that is no longer fit for sale can be disposed of in its packaging.