“For several years we have been active in the research and promotion of water-based emulsions and dispersions as an alternative to solvent-based solutions for our adhesives used in the footwear, leather goods, automotive and flexible packaging sectors,” says Guido Cami, President of ICF – Industrie Chimiche Forestali, during the presentation of the new packaging system held at February’s Lineapelle.
“The spread of these more sustainable gluing systems, however, is not a simple process, because in addition to implementing our product offer, we also need to find customers who are willing to invest in changing their production systems and processes.”
ICF, which has always been attentive to the issues of environmental sustainability, firmly believes in the need to continue to carry out research in this field, and began by offering water-based adhesives to the world of leather goods, and then extending the offer to the world of footwear, objectively a more complex area due to the technical characteristics required.
Continues Cami: “Once the water-based products were made available in the catalogue, we also asked ourselves how we could distribute them. We started by using traditional IBC containers of 1000 kg, then we moved onto 220/200 kg drums and then to 20/10/5 kg kegs. However, they are all disposable plastic packaging that creates quite a few disposal problems, as well as not being optimal for the preservation of the product. So we moved onto the Bag-in-Box system (similar to plasma bags) inserted in cardboard containers, to which was applied a connector. This system, still in use, prevents the product from coming into contact with the air, and therefore preserves its effectiveness. However, it has other limitations, such as the impossibility to make bags over 5 kg, which would make them difficult to manage, and the significant amount of material to dispose of”.
This virtuous path taken by ICF to find a distribution solution as sustainable as the products offered, has led the company based in Marcallo con Casone to take a further step forward: the development of a brand-new patented system, still in the phase of industrialization.
A revolutionary type of packaging for water-based adhesives that allows packaging products in the new ‘ContaineRevolution’ of 100 or 50 kg. A container made up of a very sturdy outer shell in PVC, closed by 2 very resistant half-shells that encase a special four-layer removable wrapping that keeps the product stable throughout its life.
Furthermore, the special construction of ContaineRevolution allows it to be connected directly to the air and to the spraying machines without additional decanting (it can carry a medium viscosity adhesive with a pressure of 0.4 bar, up to a height of 3 meters, with a flow of 8 kg per minute, with up to two guns connected simultaneously, allowing maximum flexibility inside any production site).
Attention was also placed on the end of the product life. In fact, once the adhesive is finished, the ContaineRevolution can be compressed (occupying much less space) and is ready to be returned and refilled. This procedure can be repeated for at least 30 cycles, according to initial estimates calculated by ICF.
In order to provide a complete system that meets all customer needs, the ICF is also preparing and manufacturing the accessory equipment capable of optimizing the functionality of the container, such as a transport trolley and a supporting structure that allows the products to be positioned directly on board the machine.
And the costs? “They will not increase, they will remain in line with the prices applied to other packaging systems. We believe that this innovation should not be used to earn more money, but to provide a better service to customers and the environment.”
The advantages of this innovative system are manifold:
– No waste: its construction is patented and allows dispensing 100% of the content.
– Reduces the number of packaging waste to be disposed of
– Optimizes production times: no repeated changes in the ‘bag in box’ system or filling of tanks.
– Excellent storage: thanks to the good insulation provided by the container, the adhesive is protected from temperature changes during transport and to the fact that it never comes into contact with air which allows it to preserve its performance over time.
– Positive impact on logistics: once the adhesive is finished, the container can be compressed to occupy a third of the space of a full container, thus improving the environmental impact during transport.