Towards Paper Insulation Packaging: Evaluation of Thermal and Logistics Performance. A Case Study at HelloFresh

Detta är en Master-uppsats från Lunds universitet/Förpackningslogistik

Sammanfattning: The most common thermally insulated packaging used today is plastic-based and customer behavior towards plastic materials has changed rapidly in recent years. The Meal Kit Industry has a particular need for insulated packaging/cool pouch (CP) and is looking to shift from plastic materials to more paper-based ones. Unfortunately, paper-based insulated packaging hasn’t been completely developed in the market and the options available face challenges such as ensuring sufficient insulation, affordability and product/packaging compatibility. For this work, a paper-based CP (Paper CP) insulated with cellulose insulation fiber (CIF) was developed and is evaluated against the polyethylene terephthalate (PET) and polylactic acid (PLA) CPs used by HelloFresh, the industrial partner. Three methods were used for this evaluation. First an ice melt test was used to evaluate thermal insulation performance. Second, an infrared thermography test was used to identify and analyze features that influence the thermal performance. Third, a packaging performance test was used to evaluate and compare the CPs in the supply chain for three main actors: Pick and pack staff (PnP Staff), HelloFresh packaging decision makers and Customers. Results indicate that the CIF is equally effective as PET and PLA as an insulation material. However, when comparing the whole CP, the PET CP is significantly better than Paper CP and PLA CP. The last two showed the same insulation performance. Thermal conductivity, compressibility, thickness and homogeneous distribution of the insulation material were identified as key features that affect the thermal performance of the Paper CP. Paper CP performed overall “below average” for the PnP Staff of HelloFresh and slightly “above average” for HelloFresh Packaging. The main features that lowered this score were apportionment, production efficiency and material handling.

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