IFLEX promotes an innovative reprint service in Catalonia with the aim of boosting the circular economy

Submitted by Serena Rebollo… on 21 June 2022

  • The recent tetrabrik Reprint Reprint project will allow the reuse of obsolete printed reels, reducing waste generated by production errors or other needs to update graphic information.

  • The Girona-based company IFLEX has carried out modifications to the machinery in order to offer the reprint service for tetrabrick material

  • The Agència de Residus de Catalunya has funded this initiative, which is part of the aid program for projects to promote the circular economy.

The Girona-based company IFLEX, which specializes in flexible packaging printing, has developed a new pioneering reprint service throughout the state with the collaboration of the Packaging Cluster, a representative entity in the packaging sector in Catalonia, and the financing of the Agència de Residus de Catalunya, with the program to support projects to promote the circular economy.

The initiative involves reprinting Tetrabrik packaging reels that may be obsolete for a variety of reasons, including text definition errors, printing errors, changes in nutritional values, ingredients, address, weight, and more. IFLEX, which has had to adapt its machinery to be able to reprint on this material, manages to overwrite the obsolete reels, in order to cover the obsolete texts or anagrams and add the new desired information. This reprint reduces the industrial waste that would have been generated as a result of having to dispose of the entire defective product and remanufacture it.

Tetrabrik is a material that is currently difficult to recycle and recover in waste management plants, as its multimaterial structure (composed of cardboard, aluminum and polyethylene plastic) makes it difficult to separate and revalue, which means that the percentage of polyethylene , aluminum and cardboard waste end up in an industrial landfill.

The new tetrabrik reel printing service will, on the one hand, directly save currently non-recyclable waste that ends up in landfills - among the objectives of the project is the training of machinery to be able to reprint 143,000 kg of material per year , equivalent to more than 5.5 million containers - and, on the other hand, save costs for customers who use this new service, as they will be able to avoid having to stock up on new material to package their products. 

IFLEX has 20 years of experience in reprinting plastic, paper and aluminum film. This know-how has made possible an optimal adaptation of the machinery to be able to work with tetrabrik coils, much heavier and larger than usual. A service with a wide market potential that can be extrapolated to other materials. Thanks to its advantages and the fact that no state company currently offers this differential service - which directly favors the efficient and circular economy - the project is expected to be economically scalable through different strategies. business prospecting.

The tetrabrik reel reprinting project is one of the 7 projects launched by the Packaging Cluster in the latest call for aid from the Agència de Residus de Catalunya. As Carlos Jiménez, Head of Circular Economy and Sustainable Innovation at the entity, states, "The circular innovation mentality is permeating throughout the sector and provides us with new high value-added services in terms of economic and environmental efficiency." Find out more about the project: New tetrabrik coil reprint service in Catalonia with IFLEX

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