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Spectra’s recent appearance at Packaging Innovations Birmingham proved to be hugely successful.

The two-day event staged at the National Exhibition Centre saw record numbers of visitors and was Spectra’s best yet according to Jonathan Powell, Sales Director at Spectra.

He said, “We’ve been exhibiting for over ten year’s at this show and this year we enjoyed excellent visitor numbers to our stand. Our mix of innovation and sustainability appeared to capture the imagination of those we spoke to over the two days”.

New Products

As with previous appearances, Spectra took the opportunity to preview new products, including the firm's new double wall flip-top closure (Ref: 3038) as well as an innovative new range of six 250ml oval packs, all designed to accommodate the firm’s popular oval tip-top (Ref: 3030).

This year Spectra were also delighted to unveil a new working partnership with Italian packaging firm MAV to bring a range of PET and PP jars to their product offerings.

Displayed alongside the jar examples was also a range of options in both sugarcane-based biopolymer PET and PP, something Jonathan views as a particularly good fit with Spectra’s on-going sustainable endeavours.

He said, “MAV work in a very similar way to Spectra and have a strong initiative around environmental issues. The opportunity to offer jars and in particular, PCR and biopolymer jars, will no doubt prove hugely popular with our customers”.

Sustainability

As well as new products, Spectra again showcased sustainability on their stand by highlighting their four-point sustainability commitment.

With an eye-catching accompanying table display, the four-point pledge includes minimising manufacturing impact, ensuring responsible waste management, recycling and reducing single usage and the continual development of sustainable products for customers.

Jonathan said, “The purpose of our commitment is to illustrate that we take our responsibility as a plastics manufacturer incredibly seriously. Although we continue to pioneer sustainable materials for customers looking to make a difference, it is equally important we behave in a way that is not detrimental to the environment".

Visitors also showed interest in another display on the stand explaining the benefits of Post-consumer recycled (PCR) materials and the differences in bio-based plastics, which can prove confusing for some customers as Jonathan went on to explain.

He said, “The advantages of using PCR is a fairly straightforward story to tell when explaining its benefits as an environmentally friendly alternative to virgin polymers. However, bio-based plastics are a little more complicated and probably one of the hardest areas for people to understand. It’s the reason why we created a display explaining the various factors one should consider".

Indeed, Spectra is working hard to educate customers on the benefits and limitations of bio-based materials by dispelling certain myths associated with its use, such as compostability and product suitability.

Jonathan went on to explain, "Unfortunately, not all bio-based materials are the same. Some have an excellent start of life advantages, such as plant-based materials like sugarcanes and starches. At the other end of the scale, other materials have better end of life properties such as additives, which help accelerate the breakdown of plastics”.

He added, “Then there is that area of overlap in the middle where materials are sustainably manufactured but also potentially degrade naturally into biomass. This is quite a challenging area because you also have to consider other limitations such as limited product shelf life. There is a lot of confusion around the subject, however, we provide industry expertise to guide and educate customers to find a material that is most appropriate to their needs".

Spectra's next exhibition appearance will be at Cosmetic Business in Munich in June followed by another showing in London at Packaging Innovations Olympia in September.