Agricultural waste used in packaging ‘revolutionary’ for Test Valley Packaging

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With UK demand for home deliveries continuing to grow and around 14 million parcels per day getting delivered to our doors, a more sustainable packaging solution is a step in the right direction.

Test Valley Packaging, based in Andover is working in partnership with envoPAP to introduce a brand-new material into its’ packaging portfolio: RAW (Reused Agricultural Waste) Packaging. Made from the agricultural waste from sugar cane farms across India, the card and paper will be available in a number of different formats for a wide range of packaging products. This will include cartons, printing paper and mailing bags, with room for innovation to expand to void-fill, paper bubble-wrap and much more.

The bi-product of this commonly grown crop is a sustainable solution to escalating packaging demand. India’s climate mix of sunshine, warm temperatures and precipitation have provided perfect growing conditions for sugar cane since ancient times. Before now the huge amount of sugar cane waste generated was simply discarded by farmers who had no use for it. 

The manufacturing process is exactly the same as that of wood pulp which is used for paper and cardboard production and does not consume any more energy.  It also provides a vital additional income for farmers, without the need to resort to deforestation. Each year 15 billion trees are harvested around the world 60% of which is used to manufacture paper and card. Although replanting targets remain high, only 5 billion trees are planted per year which is nowhere near enough to replenish what is taken. 

Test Valley Packaging is the first supplier in the UK to manufacture this revolutionary product. It has been independently tested and proven to perform to exactly the same high-quality standards as wood-pulp based card and paper. RAW packaging is graded using GSM, can be produced in both brown and white finishes and demonstrates an exemplary print finish.  

Consumer awareness is driving these vital changes to become more sustainable, however few are aware that it takes between 15 and 24 trees to create one tonne of paper, and around 54,000 litres of water. The impact of changing to RAW packaging could mean a saving up to 28% of carbon emissions compared with producing paper and card from wood pulp. As companies strive to reduce waste, Test Valley Packaging has found a sustainable way of using the waste stream created from an agricultural source. 

Sales Director, Ruth Lowe commented: “As a leading packaging provider, we wanted to do something revolutionary in our industry. We are so excited about being able to offer Reused Agricultural Waste as a replacement for paper, this product will literally change the future of packaging for our planet.”

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