Innovative and recyclable drink cooler made with paperboard

Weilburger Graphics set itself the aim of showcasing a sustainable alternative for food packaging, as a new demo project, and the result was the creation of an innovative and recyclable beverage cooler made from paperboard and employing a completely new waterproof coating.

The Germany-based coating, flexo inks and adhesive manufacturer chose strong and lightweight fresh fibre paperboard from Metsä Board, part of Metsä Group. The packaging incorporates a cooling tray and that can hold up to 500g of crushed ice or cold water. MetsäBoard Prime FBB EB eco-barrier paperboard was used with Weilburger Graphics’ new Senolith water-based barrier coating to keep the water inside the cooler.

Weilburger Graphics GmbH sales director Arno Dürr said: “Many of our customers, especially in the food, cooling and frozen food sectors, are looking for environmentally-friendly packaging solutions that are also safe for direct food contact. Often these solutions need to be waterproof.”

The main body of the box, including a bottom and a cover, was made of MetsäBoard Classic FBB 340 g/m², while the special cooling tray, as well as the compartment separator for easy fill up was made of Metsä Boards eco-barrier paperboard MetsäBoard Prime FBB EB 265 g/m².

“Both the idea and the implementation turned out very well. The result was a sustainable alternative to conventional packaging methods, which also has an impressive feel and look. In the future this kind of package might be an option also for fresh fruit and other foods that need to be chilled,” explained Metsä Board account director, Gabriel Goldmayer, Account Director.

Fresh fibre paperboards usually tolerate humidity better than recycled fibre-based grades. They are also lighter and, therefore, enable a lower carbon footprint of the packaging. After use, they are recyclable and contribute to the circular economy.