Doug Aldred, president at Flint Group, said, “The new four-pillar approach provides our sustainability task force with clear areas of focus. Sustainability is a huge topic for the industry but there isn’t a single defined path that results in success. This is a journey that we share with our customers, suppliers and stakeholders and we encourage a shared commitment to bring about change. We are investing our time to focus on ways that we can support a circular economy in packaging and look forward to working with the wider industry on these efforts going forward.”
The four pillars include ethical management, reduced ecological impact, responsibly built products and design for circularity.
Setting out a framework for global company-wide development, the ethical management pillar incorporates a range of audits and standards that Flint has implemented for both the company and its suppliers to adhere to.
In addition, it details new policies which are needed and that address human rights, anti-discrimination, green engineering and waste management, as well as anti-corruption and equal opportunities practices. Meanwhile, reduced ecological impact includes a programme of targets for the business to meet in relation to energy consumption, greenhouse gas emissions, water consumption and landfill waste.
The third pillar, responsibly built products, addresses the building blocks of ink formulation, regulatory compliance and the environmental impact associated with their use. And the fourth strategic pillar addresses the design of inks and coatings for the circular economy in support of the development of fully recyclable packaging solutions with minimal waste creation. By working closely with the recycling industry, the company is developing inks that are easier to recycle, including new water-based and low VOC inks.
Paul Winstanley, sr director technology and innovation at Flint Group EMEA, said, “Our technical teams are developing sustainable ink formulations using non-fossil fuel-based raw material sources that do not, for example, compete with food resources or contribute to deforestation. We have also commercialised a range of mono-solvent inks for gravure applications and have developed solutions for both flexo and gravure applications that are compliant with compostability standards to meet the increased demand for compostable packaging.”