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Paper closure: Paboco progresses in quest for 100% biobased paper bottle

Katie Nichol

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Paper closure: Paboco progresses in quest for 100% biobased paper bottle

Paboco’s next generation paper bottle with a paper closure is set to roll out in 2023. The company has also made improvements to its barrier technology, and is ultimately aiming for a biobased barrier coating.

A paper closure prototype developed with Swedish company Blue Ocean Closures is helping paper bottle company Paboco move towards its goal of developing a “recyclable and fully biobased bottle”.  The screw-top closure designed to fit Paboco’s paper threaded neck is made using a proprietary forming technology and material, combining a fiber-based body with a thin top-seal barrier layer. The closure is recyclable in standard paper recycling streams. 

Paboco notes, however, that during the paper closure's development, standard closure solutions, such as screw caps, pump dispensers or peel-off labels will initially be used. “We are working at prototype/pilot stage at the moment. Some product categories will require higher functionality from their closing solution then “just” sealing, so we need to take this step by step with our customers to find the right fitting solution,” Tim Silbermann, Product Development Manager at Paboco explains to Luxe Packaging Insight.

“For Paboco, the challenge has been developing and matching two new and revolutionary concepts at the same time, namely the interaction between a paper bottle and paper cap,” says Blue Ocean Closures CEO Lars Sandberg. He adds that the Paboco prototype is just one of Blue Ocean Closure’s developments. “While fiber-based packaging (tubes, bottles and cartons) is of course an interesting segment, the main market for fiber-based closures is glass and plastic bottles and jars. Cosmetics are a good fit and we are having initial discussions with several brands in the field.”


Paboco has also been working on its paper bottle’s barrier since announcing the first prototype of the next generation paper bottle in May 2021. Originally developed with a barrier layer in recycled PET, Paboco’s next-gen paper bottle now integrates the barrier into the bottle itself: a thin PE coating, although a biobased version is the ultimate goal.

To ensure the recyclability and repulpability of paper fibers, Paboco aims to use as little barrier material as possible, and has been working on the application method over the past year. “We might still see the first generation with rPET for some product categories, since we need to ensure that the packaging best protects the product inside,” says Silbermann. “We are looking into further developing the materials we use for the packaging to be an optimal fit to the product. Our vision is to have a biobased solution; it's already in development, but it's still too early to put a target date on it.”

Paboco hopes to introduce its next-generation paper bottle to the market via its community of "pioneer" brands (L’Oréal, Coca Cola, Carlsberg, The Absolut Company, Procter & Gamble) next year. The first products to launch will include cosmetics, home care and still drinks. “In the next stage, we will start up our coating line and build manufacturing equipment to enable mass production for market introduction in 2023,” concludes Paboco CTO Florian Müller. 

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