A well-known company for its development of barrier and functional coatings, Michelman is a global developer and manufacturer of environmentally friendly advanced materials for various industries. The company offer extensive solutions for coatings, printing & packaging, and industrial manufacturing markets. Leading manufacturers all around the world use Michelman’s water based solutions to enhance performance attributes of their products.
Michelman launches new and innovative products at regular intervals to meet the customers’ growing needs and expectation. Sensing the need of sustainable products, the company has recently launched their range of sustainable products in India.
‘Labels Flexibles & More’ got an opportunity to speak to the companies National Sales Manager Mr.Anurag Mehta and the Technical Manager Mr.Yogesh Pitake at the recently concluded 7th Speciality Films and Flexible Packaging Conference held in Mumbai.
Talking about their sustainable solutions, Anurag says, “At Michelman, we believe in providing sustainable solutions and do not just focus on sales.. Every time we visit our customer we find out their problems and provide a suitable, sustainable solution to their problem. We are one of the leading heat seal supplier in the industry. Due to the new regulation, there is an increasing need for mono material structures. We are currently focussed on targeting the vast single serve sachet market.”
He added, “Our technology manager has come out with new solution of heat seal lacquer that can be applied on polyester and on a BOPP film. The mono material structure like a polyester/ polyester laminated with metalized polyester, along with our HSL can be used to make pouches or sachets.
Speaking about the oxygen barrier coating, Anurag said, “To achieve a significant oxygen barrier polyethylene based structure and polypropylene based structures are preferred from the sustainability and mono material standpoint. For edible oil packaging, polyethylene is either laminated with the BOPA or co-extruded using nylon or EVOH. When nylon or EVOH is used in the structure it is not easily recyclable. Hence to eliminate nylon/EVOH Nylon from the structure of a laminate, our coating solution can be applied on a polyethylene film which gives excellent oxygen barrier.
“Recently we have conducted production run and have achieved excellent results. Regarding the commercial feasibility, the oxygen barrier coating is either cost-effective or is cost neutral.”
Speaking on the trends of the market, Yogesh said, “There is definitely a change in the existing trend. With government regulations in place the convertor has to look for a replacement that is not only complaint with the regulation but it also has to be cost-effective For example, A converter who has a three layer polythene blowing line and doesn't have a facility for co-extruded nylon has to invest in a five layer or a seven layer blowing line which turns out to be expensive. Alternatively, he can use his existing three-layer polythene line and use our oxygen barrier coating with a normal gravure coating process.”
He stressed on the fact that Michelman products do not require substantial investment and can be run on their existing standard gravure machines.
He added, “Besides Oxygen barrier and heat seal coating for polyester, we are also working on our water based matt coating for films and texture coating that provides some textures like sandy finish or a paper look & feel to a film at a lower coat weight compared to other chemistries.”
Speaking on Michelmans latest innovations,, Yogesh said, " We have developed a solution for paper cup application where we have replaced polyethylene layer in paper cup. so that the solution becomes 100% recyclable and re-pulpable. More than 99% of the pulp can be regained out of the coated material.. Apart from Paper Cup application this solution can be used for ice cream packaging application as well. This coating not only acts as a water, oil & grease resistant barrier, but also has sealable properties. India is one of the world’s biggest importer of virgin pulp used in the food packaging industry. With our solutions, it is possible to regain 99% of the pulp and reuse it for food contact application, thereby reducing import.’’
“One of the important recyclable developments is the barrier coating solution for paper where you can get oxygen barrier and moisture barrier that can be used for most of the dry food packaging application. The flexible packaging industry is now booming, and people are keen to invest in innovative flexible packaging structure."
Concluding the interaction, Anurag said that Michelman’s top priority is to solve customer’s problems. “Our efforts are in place for the right chemistry for right application and that's how we are successful globally. There is receptivity within the converters in India, within the film manufacturers and within the brand owners, to adopt for a change. . Brand owners and converters are always looking for a new products and are willing to change provided there is some value addition or some cost saving involved. We see double digit growth in the packaging industry in the coming years and do not see any downward trend.”