Toray Films Touted as Foil Replacements

NORTH KINGSTOWN, RI | Toray Plastics (America) reports that uncertainty about the availability and price of aluminum foil used for packaging applications in response to the antidumping duty (AD) and countervailing duty (CVD) investigations led by the US Department of Commerce is prompting CPG companies and converters to consider alternative substrates and creative solutions for their packaging needs. 

Toray reportedly offers the industry assurance that proven, barrier-durable, cost-effective MET OPP and MET PET films, including several with advanced integrated sealant technology, are readily available to replace foil. The company extrudes and orients its OPP and PET films, which include bio-based versions, and has the capability to metallize and coat many of them, including “dialing in” barrier and unique seal-strength characteristics for customized applications. Vertical manufacturing is said to ensure product quality control and provide customers with convenient, cost-effective bundling, ordering, and shipping.

Regarding the company’s metallized film for foil-replacement, Tammy Williamson, associate product manager of the Torayfan Polypropylene Film Division, says that several customers were early adopters of MET OPP as a drop-in replacement in paper-polyethylene-foil-polyethylene (PPFP) packet and SUP packaging used for oatmeal, hot cocoa, seasonings, dried soup, rice, dried cheese, mixes, powdered beverages, and nutrition/energy drinks. “They discovered that Toray’s advanced film technology could equal or surpass the moisture- and oxygen-barrier durability, yield, and economics of traditional foil, while also helping to manufacture an attractive, resilient finished package.”

Torayfan PC1, PC3, PC5, and M23 MET OPP films are designed specifically for drop-in foil-replacement and buried-barrier web applications. They are said to offer excellent flex-crack and puncture resistance and deliver excellent moisture- and oxygen-barrier durability. Torayfan PCFS, MH5C, and LGHX5 metallized films for PPFP applications have the additional feature of integrated sealant technology, allowing for the replacement of the foil and sealant layers. Williamson adds that pouches for coffee, nuts, dried fruits, and salty snacks that are made with foil are also ideally suited for foil-replacement. Company’s Lumirror ( MK61 and MK6HB MET PET films are robust alternatives to foil that reportedly offer outstanding oxygen- and moisture-barrier protection for those foods. They may be used as an outer layer in a two-ply lamination or as the middle layer in a three-ply lamination.

According to Toray, MET OPP and MET PET have an industry-leading metal adhesion and greater bond strength between the non-metal lamination layer and extrusion laminations/coatings when compared with regular corona-treated films. Those characteristics eliminate the dissatisfying delaminated “pouch in a pouch” effect that can occur when a consumer opens a weaker package. These films are also very thin and said to deliver more film per pound than do thicker films, making them a sustainable choice, yet they maintain strong package-processing characteristics. Increased footage also enables converters to lower the number of required roll changes, thus reducing the amount of scrap and providing even greater cost savings and another sustainability advantage.

MET OPP and MET PET films, unlike foil, do not exhibit a “shop worn” appearance after packaging and handling, says the company. Packets made with these films are said to make a positive impression when taken out of a box, and stand-up pouches maintain a fresh, eye-catching appearance on the retail shelf.

To read the US Department of Commerce’s communication about its antidumping and countervailing duty investigations of aluminum foil from China, visit this link.

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