• Braskem and Colgate-Palmolive form a partnership for initiative in favor of circular economy in packaging segment

    DATE: 12/04/2019

    Published by: Braskem

    Braskem, the largest petrochemical company in the Americas and world leader in the production of biopolymers, is increasingly expanding the list of partnerships with its clients with the objective of expanding the actions that leverage the circular economy of packaging. The most recent initiative is a partnership with Colgate-Palmolive, one of the largest consumer products companies in the world, for the 7th edition of the Braskem Design Challenge, an action that involves university students for the development of packaging with the concept Design for Environment, which facilitates the recycling process and minimizes environmental impacts during all its life cycle.

    For this edition, students were challenged to create a more sustainable toothpaste package for Colgate-Palmolive. The hackathon was held on the penultimate weekend and on Monday, 4/11, in Sao Paulo (SP). The winning group presented a refill tube design for toothpaste and a packaging for the product made from Green Polyethylene Braskem’s Green Plastic, produced from sugarcane, captures 3.09 kg of CO2 per kilo produced. Since it is an alternative that encourages adequate disposal, stimulating circular economy, and a packaging with raw material from renewable source, such as Green Plastic, the idea presented by students can reduce the environmental impact by up to 78%.

    “It was very rewarding to participate in the Design Challenge. We could understand that what is important for the plastic chain and society is that it returns to be a product after reaching the consumer. We will certainly think of resin as a product for design when we start our careers in product design,” says Stefanie Troquetti, a design student at Mackenzie and a member of the winning group.

    “We are committed to making our packaging more sustainable by working with other companies and organizations that prioritize and support this goal. Participating in the Design Challenge has enabled us to approach this theme in a reasoned and open way, because we believe that joint efforts like these will impel the most innovative ideas”, explains André Moraes, Packaging Development Coordinator of Colgate-Palmolive.

    Fabiana Quiroga, director of Circular Economy at Braskem in South America, explains that sustainability is a theme that is increasingly present in companies’ daily lives and that the Design Challenge is an opportunity to expand discussions on the subject. “It is a tool for connection, where we also promote awareness of the members of the value chain in which we operate and share knowledge with future professionals. In addition, design is essential to leverage the circular economy,” she says. According to Quiroga, rethinking the design considering the possible environmental and social impacts, in addition to the product cycle, is also essential to contribute to the increase in recycling rates.

    Braskem has adapted the Design Challenge to a more modern and faster format, which requires even more agility and creativity from students to develop solutions at the speed demanded by the market. For Colgate-Palmolive hackathon, students had around 30 hours to understand company’s needs, researches about consumers behavior and about market trends, project development and prototyping. In the prototyping phase, the 3D Criar helped with the supply of raw materials and 3D printers. In the last stage, the students presented the prototypes to the examining board, with members from Braskem, the market and Colgate-Palmolive.

    The students also had the support of Braskem to base their projects on the methodology of Life Cycle Assessment (Avaliação de Ciclo de Vida – ACV) which measures possible environmental impacts caused by the manufacture and use of a given product or service. The AVCs consider all stages of the production process, from the extraction of raw material to the disposal of the product by the consumer, and also factors such as global warming, use of natural resources, with data quantified according to ISO 14044 standard.

    The hackathon with Colgate-Palmolive had the participation of students of Design and Engineering courses of the universities Belas Artes, Instituto Mauá and Mackenzie, selected by a technical commission of Innoscience and Braskem. In addition to Colgate-Palmolive, Braskem counted on other partnerships, such as Innoscience itself, an innovation consultancy, and mentors Luís Bartolomei, founder of CBA+G Agency and Cláudia Weber, Interbrand operations manager and ESPM teacher.

    Partnering with customers to drive the circular economy
    In addition to the Design Challenge, Braskem has other initiatives to engage clients in the packaging segment and brand owners in favor of the circular economy. Recently, the company announced partnership with Antilhas Flexíveis for the development of stand-up single-material pouch packaging, i.e., produced from a single raw material, with technology that generates a higher quality post-consumption resin and increases the efficiency of recycling and the return of the product to the chain.

    This year, Braskem also established partnership with Atlhetica Nutrition a brand of sports food supplements, for the application of plastic from renewable source I’m greenTM, made from sugar cane, on the packaging of products of Best Vegan line, a vegan protein distributed in Brazil and in other Latin American countries, such as Paraguay, Ecuador, Peru and Chile, besides distribution in Mexico and China. This product is recyclable and of 100% renewable origin and contributes to the reduction of CO2 emissions, one of the gases that cause the greenhouse effect.

    “The design and type of raw material for the development of plastic packaging are important to reduce impacts on society. In addition to the importance of conscious consumption and proper disposal, the industry plays a key role in how it will present its products to the end consumer. At Braskem, we are inviting clients, members of the value chain and society in general to expand our joint effort in search of innovative and more sustainable solutions. The Braskem Design Challenge is one of the ways to connect with those who can make a difference,” adds Nicolai Duboc, Braskem’s Market Development Manager.

    “We are continuously investing in innovation and technology development to deliver the most sustainable solutions for the plastic chain. In the packaging segment, specifically, collaboration and co-creation with the various links in the chain is essential to build a new generation of packaging designed for the circular economy,” concludes Yuri Tomina, Market Development Manager at Braskem.

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