When it comes to innovation in at-home coffee brewing, the advent of the single-serve coffee pod is hard to beat. For those times when we just need a quick boost to get through the day, the ability to have a hot cup of coffee ready in a matter of seconds can certainly be a welcome alternative to the hassle of brewing an entire pot.
But a problem that has plagued these coffee pods since they hit the scene is their sustainability. Since many of these pods are primarily plastic, they get discarded into the trash after just a single use, adding to the plastic waste problem that has become a top concern amongst consumers.
We wanted to highlight a packaging solution that comes from TC Transcontinental Packaging for Maxwell House Canada coffee pods.
Both the external “mother bag” and the coffee pod lidding have been certified as industrial compostable by the Biodegradable Products Institute or BPI. In its entry form, TC Transcontinental explained that the flexible pouch and pod lidding implement a high percentage of plant-based materials, which allows the consumer to reduce the amount of waste being sent to the landfill.
On the pods themselves, in addition to the lidding, the mesh that holds the ground coffee, which was provided by another supplier, and the ring that creates the seal with the lidding are compostable as well, which assures the consumer that no separation is needed when discarding the pod.
On the print side, Transcontinental shared that it needed to ensure the inks being utilized would not impede the composting of the package. So, the company implemented inks that also meet the BPI standards, not leading to any soil toxicity during composting. The films were printed in Extended Gamut 7 process, ensuring that the Maxwell House brand graphics were well represented.
While sustainability is important in developing packaging, TC Transcontinental detailed that performance could not be sacrificed. So, in developing these compostable films, the company also ensured that they would perform as desired, and there would be no impact on machinability.
In the packaging industry, it’s always incredible to see how packaging innovation can improve the lives of consumers and that’s certainly the case with single-serve coffee pods. However, when innovation can lead to convenience and environmental responsibility, that’s a win-win for everyone.