Sponsored by Clariant Plastics
Clariant Masterbatches: Global Leader in Color and Additive Concentrates and Performance Solutions for Plastics
Adding color and functionality to plastics, accelerating product design and development, building brand power in diverse markets, the people, products and technology of Clariant Masterbatches helps make plastic packaging – and many other products too – beautiful, functional and sustainable.
Plastic packaging is one of the 20th century’s most important inventions: it’s highly recyclable, consumes less water and energy than paper and other materials and it is a safe way to deliver products while preserving their quality. Today, among the world’s leading brand companies and packaging designers and producers, Clariant Masterbatches is the supplier of choice for color, special effects and additive concentrates and related technology.
In personal-care, food and beverage, household and laundry, medical and pharmaceutical, packaging, customers rely on Clariant’s technical excellence and unparalleled service. Unique creative resources like ColorWorks® design centers and the ColorForward® color-trend-analysis tool, support development of distinctive design, while differentiating products and shorten time-to-market.
Whether for hair care or skin care, lotions or creams, shower or bath, women, men or children – designers, specifiers, marketing specialists and brand managers turn to Clariant for help in quickly developing color and material solutions, shortening time to market, differentiating brands and rationalizing product life-cycle management.
At the same time, Clariant recognizes that plastic packaging is a major contributor to a growing global litter problem, threatening the future of marine life and the entire ecosystem. As a key player in the packaging market, Clariant is working with other companies and organizations in a multi-faceted effort to make plastic packaging more sustainable.
The industry has embarked on a major initiative to reduce the amount of plastic that goes into packaging and Clariant is supporting it with materials and technology that improves performance so container walls can be thinner without reducing strength or shelf life. Oxygen- and moisture-barrier materials help packaging keep food and pharmaceuticals fresh longer so less is disposed of unused. And HYDROCEROL® chemical foaming agents reduce the density of polymer structures, saving resin and reducing weight without compromising appearance or functionality.
Recycling is already recovering large volumes plastic waste for reintroduction to the marketplace as new packaging, but there are still major challenges increased use of post-consumer resin (PCR) and Clariant is working to overcome them in several ways:
- New oxygen-scavenging additive masterbatches reduce the need for multi-layer, multi-material packaging to extend shelf-life of packaged goods. With only one material involved, the plastic is more readily recyclable.
- CESA®-IR additive masterbatches are now available to make dark-colored plastics visible to the near-infrared (NIR) sensors used in the polymer sorting systems so they can be effectively recycled.
- Chain extenders, odor control technology, special colors and color improve the quality and marketability of plastic materials after they are recycled.
Currently, most packaging is designed to complete its life cycle as soon as the product is delivered, but parameters need to be re-set if containers are to survive for longer periods. Clariant products available to support such an effort include additives that:
- Increase the durability and scratch resistance of plastics
- Decrease the tendency of materials to yellow over time
- Resist degradation due to washing and sterilization
- Prevent color fading and other aesthetic losses
- Control stress cracking and brittleness
Clariant helps for more sustainable packaging to answer customer demands and underline that ‘sustainability’ and ‘circular economy’ are no longer just buzzwords
Bio-based polymers, more commonly referred to as bioplastics, are made from renewable materials rather than fossil materials like petroleum or natural gas. They are gaining a lot of interest because they use plant-based feedstocks and result in lower carbon emissions than other polymers. These resins are essentially identical to conventional plastics and can benefit from the same design-for-recycling solutions referenced above. At the same time, Clariant is supporting customers that dream of offering a 100% bio-based product by developing develop colors and additives using similarly renewable feedstock.
Biodegradable polymers – polylactic acid (PLA) or polyhydroxyalkanoate (PHA), for instance – are often held up as a possible solution to the problem of littering since they naturally degrade over time. They could also be attractive in countries where recycling infrastructure is under-developed or non-existent. And they may also represent an interesting solution for food applications, since food-contaminated packaging cannot be recycled but could be composted. Clariant is working hard to further improve the (already good) shelf life of biopolymers, and the aesthetic of these materials, with a range of vibrant colors that help to preserve and enhance brand identity. With more than 20 years’ experience in manufacturing masterbatches suitable for compostability and certified by Technical Inspection Associations, such as TÜV, Clariant ensures that all necessary parameters are met.
Wherever plastics are used, Clariant Masterbatches is there; bringing color to products and packaging, improving performance and helping the environment. We serve not only packaging, but all major markets, including automotive, fibers, consumer goods, CEEE, healthcare and others. With more than 50 facilities worldwide, our knowledge of local supply, customs, and regulations, and our global and local technical support guarantee a seamless transfer of know-how and safe, efficient, and effective processing.
Clariant Masterbatches Initiative Seeks to Help Make Plastics Packaging More Sustainable. (Photo: Clariant)