Clondalkin creates packaging to stop migration of mineral oil – but is it enough?

By Jenny Eagle

- Last updated on GMT

Clondalkin creates packaging to stop migration of mineral oil

Related tags Mineral oils Mineral oil Packaging Ink

Clondalkin Flexible Packaging Wentus has developed two barrier films WSL 343040 and WSL 143031, for dry food products that it claims stops the migration of mineral oils from the outer packaging into food. 

The multi-layer film can be used as a ‘bag-in-box’ liner for rice, dry pasta, dry noodles, baby food and cereals. 

A short-term solution

The Wentopro-barrier film is the result of 18 months R&D, based in Höxter, Germany, and while experts applaud the advancement in technology, Jane Muncke, managing director, Food Packaging Forum Foundation, asks is it enough?

It’s an interesting development and a short term solution to the problem of high level migration of mineral oils and printing ink components into dry foods from paperboard​,” said Muncke.

Such technology will allow the use of recycled paperboard as a secondary food packaging material which is of interest in terms of our society’s circular economy goals​.

In the mid to long-term however we need to avoid problematic chemicals in printing inks, so paperboard can be recycled by anyone without concerns about hazardous chemicals inside it​.

This would mean reforming the global printing inks industry, which may be a task even more challenging than climate change. I hope someone will rise to that challenge​.”

Speaking about the development of the Wentopro-barrier film, Christian Claes, business development director, Clondalkin Flexible Packaging Wentus, said WSL 343040 protects against mineral oil saturated hydrocarbons (MOSH) and mineral oil aromatic hydrocarbons (MOAH) and WSL 143031, protects against mineral oils and UV photoinitiator exposure, used in curing inks on cardboard and food labels. 

Migration of MOSH should not exceed 2 mg/kg

He said the migration of UV photoinitiators into food has been the subject of recent scientific debate and the German Federal Ministry of Food, Agriculture and Consumer Protection recommends migration of MOSH should not exceed 2 mg/kg and MOAH levels should be no higher than 0.5mg/kg. 

Wentopro-barrier film offers protection with typical values less than 0.2mg/kg for both. 

Mineral oil hydrocarbons derive from printing ink used in newsprint, which is commonly used to make recycled cardboard for food packaging. It is an important advance for the food packaging industry​,” said Claes. 

Some recent studies have linked these mineral oils to the inflammation of internal organs, including the liver, spleen and lymph nodes​.” 

Both products (WSL 143031 and WSL 143040) are available in two colours, translucent and white. They also offer a high barrier against water vapour and are compatible with different types of sealing machine.

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