Highlighting the monumental announcements that make us Smart Plastic. From our unique strategic partnerships and product developments, to our ever-expanding expert team, view our company news below.
PFNonwovens’ new Eclipse® technology by Smart Plastic renders polyolefin-based nonwovens degradable.
Headquartered in Prague, Czech Republic, PFNonwovens has been a leading global producer and innovator of customized spunmelt nonwoven fabrics for decades. This INDA member manufactures nonwovens for use in the personal hygiene market such as baby diapers, adult incontinence and feminine hygiene products and wipes. PFN also supplies construction, agricultural and medical applications.
"Our tradition of innovation is continuing today with the development of a sustainable solutions platform to improve end-of-non-woven product life," said Tonny de Beer, Chief Technology & Sustainability Officer for PFN.
PFN’s product advances include carbon footprint optimization and carbon footprint modeling. One example of these advances is our end-of-non-woven product life breakthrough innovation based on Smart Plastic's SPTek ECLIPSE™ bio-assimilation technology, which renders polyolefin based nonwovens degradable. Smart Plastic Technologies confirms that ECLIPSE™ is backed by the world’s first C-13 carbon labeling bio-assimilation test, which definitively demonstrated the transfer of carbon from an ECLIPSE™-enabled polyolefin film into the cell walls of microorganisms, creating biomass.
This joint venture in collaboration with Smart Plastic Technologies is progressing rapidly. Nonwoven manufacturing process validation steps including masterbatch addition and formula optimization have been successfully demonstrated. Accelerated aging tests of the ECLIPSE™-enabled nonwovens showed the desired rapid disintegration (e.g., polymer molecular weight reduction) profiles of the PP based material. Followup bio-assimilation tests, including microbial consumption resulting in water, small amounts of carbon dioxide, and biomass as final products at specific conditions simulating various end-of-product life environments (e.g. terrestrial, marine, etc.), are currently underway.
Finally, PFN’s robust corporate environmental sustainability program, which is centered around emissions and waste reduction, contributes to further reduce PFN’s impact on the environment. For example, 100% green electricity is now used at all the company’s manufacturing sites in the Czech Republic.
(This article originally appeared on the INDA website and is republished here in its entirety with permission).
Through our unique partnership, Smart Plastic and Munchkin® are changing plastic. Munchkin products and packaging using Smart Plastic's ECLIPSE™ technology will disappear from the Earth, leaving zero plastic waste.
We couldn't contain our smiles all around when we recently read about our ECLIPSE™ technology being featured in Munchkin's sustainability report. Our partnership with Munchkin is unique, and it is changing plastic for the better — for a brighter future on our "Big Blue Marble." Munchkin CEO Steven Dunn says it best in his opening letter:
"Big changes begin with baby steps. But let’s cut to the chase; we’re way past learning to walk. When I began Munchkin 32 years ago, I had a goal of simplifying parenting by inventing smart, reliable products. This promise still holds true today, but it has added weight. Our newest innovations look beyond immediate usage and focus on long-term environmental sustainability to support a 360 world. It’s not complicated. We invest in our children’s future, just as parents do each day. Kids grow fast, so we need to work faster. Our ongoing commitment to the United Nations Global Compact (the world’s largest corporate sustainability initiative) and our recent announcement with Smart Plastic Technologies reinforce the actions we are taking to preserve our children’s playground. Concerned about greenwashing? So are we. This report does more than make promises. It is packed with the actions we are making to change the world today." —STEVEN B. DUNN, CEO & Founder, Munchkin Inc.
We couldn't agree more.
You may read the entire report here: https://www.munchkin.com/media/Munchkin_Sustainability_Report_2022.pdf
We recently heard from Highlight Industries who completed a comparison test between traditional Stretch Film and SPTek ECLIPSE™ Stretch Film. See what they had to say!
We pride ourselves on developing products that have all the beneficial properties of plastic without the added environmental damage. It’s essential that our products live up to not only our own customers’ standards – but also to their customers’ standards as well.We recently received the following testimonial from one of our customers and couldn't be more thrilled to hear it.
“Highlight recently conducted comparative lab and load stability tests on two high-performance commercial stretch films, one made with Smart Plastic's SPTek ECLIPSE™ bio-assimilation technology and another without the additive. All tests performed yielded statistically equivalent results, with no noticeable difference in the excellent performance properties of the commercial film, with or without the ECLIPSE™ additive. These results are all the more impressive considering the ECLIPSE™ content will reportedly render the stretch film capable of complete bio-assimilation. This is a real win for green technology in the stretch film industry.”
Smart Plastic Technologies has been working with LMPE since 2016 to conduct research and develop SPTek products. This technical partnership is integral to our work and company growth.
At Smart Plastic our partnerships are a fundamental support mechanism for our business. We are thrilled to highlight a key technical partner that we have been working with since the beginning to create and irrevocably prove our ECLIPSE™ technology - LMPE, an eco-compatible polymeric materials laboratory based in Lucca, Italy.
Together with LMPE, Pisa University, CNR Laboratories, and other university bio-science labs, we designed and conducted the first-ever C-13 test to determine bio-assimilation in ECLIPSE™-enabled plastic. This bio-assimilation test conclusively tracks the origin of carbon within a closed environment using Carbon-13. In addition to our laboratory work, Dr. Lucia Perez, LMPE’s former Materials & Bio-Systems Engineer, is a member of our Science Advisory board, supporting the technical development of our products.
The methodology of the C-13 carbon labeling test is quite simple, it took degraded ECLIPSE™ material and fed it to a colony of microorganisms in order to prove bio-assimilation. To track the amount of carbon given off during the test and the growth of the colony, proving bio-assimilation, the researchers used carbon labeling with Carbon-13 atoms. The carbon labeling showed that the locked hydro-carbon chains in the plastic broke down to an open carbon source which the colony of microorganisms could use as a fuel source, breaking the material down completely with no microplastics left.
Wikipedia describes carbon labeling as such:
Carbon labeling is a form of isotopic labeling where a carbon-12 atom has been replaced with either a carbon-13 atom or a carbon-14 atom in a chemical compound so as to 'tag' that position of the compound to assist in determining the way a chemical reaction proceeds.
We began working with LMPE in 2016 to conclusively prove our revolutionary ECLIPSE™ technology. We are delighted that such a reputable laboratory is one of our technical partners and we look forward to working with LMPE as we continue to better plastic for the future of our planet and its inhabitants.
LMPE (Ecosustainable Polymeric Materials Laboratory) srl Benefit Company is an Italian Innovative Start-up and is an affiliated Spin-off to INSTMThe National Inter-University Consortium of Materials Science and Technology. LMPE’s mission is aimed at the research & development of materials, processes, and technologies in the field of polymeric materials, and semi-finished and eco-friendly finished products.
Understanding the importance of the circular economy, LMPE is a member of the ICESP (Italian Circular Economy Stakeholder Platform). LMPE uses a set of modern equipment in collaboration with the INSTM Consortium and the Department of Chemistry and Industrial Chemistry of the Pisa University.
The following tests are completed at LMPE:
This year’s Earth Day theme is ‘Invest in our Planet’. Read how we're prioritizing the future of our planet through various initiatives below.
While the first Earth Day was hosted in 1970, it was not recognized worldwide for another 20 years. Now 32 years since Earth Day went global, more than a billion people mark the day to show support for the continual protection of our planet and its inhabitants.
Earth Day calls upon individuals, governments, organizations, and all sizes of companies, to reflect on the ways they impact our planet and its hundreds of ecosystems. At Smart Plastic we grasp and actively invest in the future of our planet every day.
We’re investing in our planet so future generations of people and creatures can thrive in a flourishing and healthy world.
While protecting and maximizing the shelf life of produce is critical to our food system, we must care for the environment as well.
In an increasingly globalized food economy, the use of plastic packaging for fresh fruits and vegetables is now commonplace. Produce is particularly fragile and susceptible to heat and moisture, resulting in a short shelf life. While additional packaging protects against microbial contamination during distribution and reduces spoilage and waste, it inevitably introduces a significant amount of plastic into the environment.
ECLIPSE™ solves this problem.
While maintaining 100% recyclability, our SPTek ECLIPSE™ bio-assimilation additiveensures that any plastic that escapes the recycling system will rapidly and naturally biodegrade in both terrestrial and marine environments. With a completely customizable useful-life performance, packaging infused with ECLIPSE™ will effectively complete its function while reducing the environmental impact of plastic. With a simple 1% inclusion rate in the production process, ECLIPSE™ is ASTM 5526 and 6954 certified and FDA approved.
This sustainable polymer additive has a wide range of fresh fruit and vegetable packaging applications, including but not limited to:
COVID-19 has significantly impacted our food service industry, resulting in an increase in demand for the items required to support take-out and delivery.
In the midst of the global COVID-19 pandemic, many of the businesses being affected are in the food service industry. In lieu of welcoming customers in, restaurants, bakeries, coffee shops and fast food establishments are focusing on take-out and delivery. The corresponding increase in demand for food service items will present a significant problem when they inevitably escape the recycling net.
ECLIPSE™ will reduce plastic pollution.
Our proven ECLIPSE™ sustainable polymer additive ensures that plastic bio-assimilates like paper in both terrestrial and marine environments, leaving behind no microplastics. Designed for use in polyolefins like PE and PP, ECLIPSE™ is the answer to our plastic pollution problem. With a simple 1% inclusion rate in the production process, ECLIPSE™ is ASTM 5526 and 6954 certified, FDA approved and 100% recyclable.
This sustainable polymer additive has a wide range of food service item applications, including but not limited to:
With the safety and well-being of our healthcare heroes and essential workers at stake, we must use every tool available to protect them.
Personal protective equipment (PPE) provides the crucial barrier between our healthcare heroes and their dangerous working environments. Following use, all PPE must be disposed of, placing our custodial and sanitation professionals in harm's way. We must leave no stone unturned in order to mitigate the risks that our essential workers face every day.
GARD™ antimicrobial is here to help.
While the ergonomic design of PPE is key to ensuring the health and safety of our healthcare workers, we need to use every tool available to protect them. The same goes for those that handle and transport the dangerous PPE waste. Our SPTek GARD™ polymer additiveprovides up to 99.999% antimicrobial protection (a '5-log reduction') and is proven highly effective against major health threats, including dozens of dangerous both 'gram-positive and gram-negative' organisms.
This sustainable polymer additive has a wide range of PPE applications, including but not limited to:
SPTek GARD™ is a multi-purpose, FDA approved antimicrobial product that is highly effective at inhibiting pathogenic contamination in foods and extending shelf-life.
Food packaging plays an essential role in the protection and distribution of sensitive foods like dairy, bakery items, meat, fish and poultry products, and fresh fruits and vegetables. It's more important than ever to protect against pathogenic organisms that can contaminate and prematurely spoil foods.
GARD™ antimicrobial is the answer.
Food security is a major issue, and our proven GARD™ antimicrobial additive plays a central role in the solution. Assuring safety, maintaining quality and extending shelf-life are critical to all perishable food products. GARD™ antimicrobial has been extensively tested, is FDA approved and can be applied to any polymers used for food packaging, including PE, PP, PS, PET and more. With up to a '5-log reduction' in antimicrobial protection (99.999%) and proven highly effective against MRSA, Salmonella, Listeria, E. coli and dozens of common, dangerous organisms, GARD™ is the solution for your food packaging.
This sustainable polymer additive has a wide range of food packaging applications, including but not limited to:
Additionally, GARD™ does not contain any chemicals, enzymes or additives sourced from animals, making it perfectly suitable for halal, kosher and vegan certified foods.
While plastic straws have emerged as a symbol for the global plastic crisis, many substitutes come with their own set of health, performance and environmental impacts.
We all know the story. Plastic straws have emerged as a symbol for the global plastic crisis, being used for only minutes, but lasting in the environment for generations. Companies big and small are seeking eco-friendly alternatives to accommodate the strong societal attitudes toward plastic and the environment.
While the problem is real, many plastic substitutes come with their own set of health, performance and environmental impacts. Plant-based bioplastics are tricky because they require an unacceptable amount of natural resources and won't break down when composted incorrectly. Reusable straws are difficult to keep clean and are significantly more expensive. Paper straws have a greater carbon footprint throughout the manufacturing process (not to mention that delightful feeling of soggy cardboard in your mouth to accompany your favorite beverage).
Solution: the Smart Plastic ECLIPSE™ Straw.
Satisfying all of the quality requirements for hot, cold, foamy and frozen beverages while meeting eco-friendly expectations, the ECLIPSE™ Straw is up to the challenge. Made with our proven ECLIPSE™ bio-assimilation additive, the straw will biodegrade in both marine and terrestrial environments, resulting in nothing more than CO2, water and biomass. And like all plastics produced with ECLIPSE™, it is ASTM 5526 and 6954 certified, FDA approved and 100% recyclable.
We no longer need to compromise to accommodate health, performance and the environment. The ECLIPSE™ Straw delivers on all fronts.