Tuesday 22 October 2019

Patent ruling clears the way for Quinn's recyclable food tray

Irish producer in packaging recycling breakthrough, writes Samantha McCaughren

Quinn Packaging’s Co Cavan base
Quinn Packaging’s Co Cavan base
Samantha McCaughren

Samantha McCaughren

A ruling by the patent court in London has found in favour of an application by Quinn Packaging to revoke patents held by two competitors in connection with an air-tight seal solution for plastic food trays.

The rivals were Linpac Packaging, owned by Klockner Pentaplast, and Faerch Plast.

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Following the judgment by London's Intellectual Property Enterprise Court, Quinn Packaging will this week launch a new fully recycled and recyclable plastic food tray solution, developed for the fresh meat, fish and poultry sectors.

The patent holders failed in their bid to defend their claims of originality or 'inventive step' for trays without the need for a non-recyclable plastic layer.

The case centred on Quinn Packaging having provided the court with irrefutable evidence of having prior art for a similar adhesive-based solution.

The result is the launch of a single-material tray, Signum by Quinn, which is wholly recyclable in the same way as PET bottles.

The breakthrough is a second sustainability development for Quinn Packaging following the launch of its Detecta by Quinn product earlier this year.

Detecta is a fully recyclable black plastic packaging technology. Previously, PET black plastic could not be easily identified and removed for recycling and were permanently lost to landfill or incineration.

The Detecta by Quinn formulation enables black plastic trays to be easily identified and removed for recycling.

Mark McKenna, general manager of Quinn Packaging, said: "We are very pleased with the outcome of the patent revocation action at the Intellectual Property Enterprise Court, which supports our continuing innovation and sustainability agenda at Quinn Packaging.

"Consumers are demanding more sustainable packaging solutions. With Signum by Quinn we are offering the market a tray that has a 100pc recycled material content and is 100pc recyclable back into new food-grade trays."

Quinn Packaging, part of Quinn Industrial Holdings, is one of the UK and Ireland's leading plastic food packaging manufacturers.

Based in Ballyconnell, Co Cavan, and with a workforce of 150, its product range includes meat trays, ready-meal containers, mushroom punnets and dairy spread containers.

It supplies many of the biggest food processing companies in the UK and Ireland and has a shelf presence in every major UK supermarket.

Its customer base includes some of Ireland's largest food groups including ABP Foods, Dawn Meats, Monaghan Mushrooms, Lakeland Dairies, Ornua and Kerry Foods.

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