4everPack project seeks for solutions to reuse consumer packaging

4everPack project seeks for solutions to reuse consumer packaging

Projects 31.01.2022

Despite the great efforts taking place to improve the recyclability and recycling of packaging materials, large quantity of materials still escapes to nature due to littering. The goal of the 4everPack project initiated by VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland and University of Vaasa is to increase the amount of reusable packaging solutions in the market for fast-moving consumer goods. The project is linked closely to the ExpandFibre Ecosystem with multiple members contributing to the project’s activities.

At the moment, huge amounts of especially plastic materials get discarded and their value is lost in the take-make-dispose linear business. At the same time, part of the discarded materials often escapes the systems causing huge environmental problems especially when they end up in nature. 4everPack project will stop the plastic pollution and wasting of natural resources by creating a system where packaging repeatedly circulates in a controlled, tracked, efficient and fully circular manner.

To achieve this, 4everPack covers the future value chain of reusable packaging with an ecosystem formed around it. Ecosystem partners are companies highly interested in exploring and revealing the full potential of reuse. The 4everPack project builds on the solutions drafted together with the participating companies. Solutions to optimise packaging materials and design, customise and personalise solutions, and tracing of the packaging together with digital tools, efficient logistics and new business models are all being studied in the project. Limitations and potential of biobased materials in reusable packaging is one research question in 4everPack.

“It was only some years ago that for example most beverages sold in Finland were packed in re-usable bottles. We believe that by utilising modern technologies allowing traceability of individual packaging we can take the reuse to the next level, making it considerably safer and more efficient in order to reduce the need for virgin feedstocks, but also to optimise how the value chain, storage and logistics function,” says project manager Jussi Lahtinen from VTT.

As a forerunner in innovations, solutions and materials for packaging, Finland has a great opportunity to take a leading position in the emerging field of reuse. With the support of active Finnish packaging stakeholders, 4everPack consortium is able to create exports worth 1B€ to Finland over the next 10 years.

Project partners:

VTT, University of Vaasa, Brightplus, Metsä Board, Borealis, Berner, Kiilto, Kotipizza, S Group, Kesko, HUS, City of Helsinki, Kamupak, NordicID, UpCode, Tomra.