New Generation of H.B. Fuller Swift tak Adhesives Enables Growing Demand for Paper Straws

19 February 2021

As global regulatory single-use plastics bans go into effect across the globe, and the European Union paves the way for the rest of the world by sealing a ban on throwaway plastics such as plates, cutlery, and straws by mid-2021, manufacturers need now more than ever a high-performance adhesive they can rely on to meet growing demand for paper straws.

According to custom research commissioned by H.B. Fuller, the Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) for paper straws in Europe is expected to grow at 31% for the next three years. This estimate, combined with the upcoming sweeping legislations, reinforces sustainability as one of the guiding themes on strategy and product development for industry’s major players.

H.B. Fuller is committed to developing more intelligent solutions for the benefit of people and the planet. With this in mind, a multidisciplinary team of its scientists have developed Swift tak 5730 water-based adhesive to further advance the paper straw industry. This technology offers paper straw producers superior performance in terms of consistent, easy machinability, cleanability, and overall productivity in response to the increased demand for safe and sustainable paper straws.

The new generation of plasticizer free, three-hour liquid resistant adhesive, which exceeds the liquid resistance market requirement for cold beverages, enables a high-quality durable straw and reduces operational downtime. In fact, its high wet tack allows manufacturers to meet aggressive productivity goals while using fast paper straw machines that can produce more than 500 straws per minute.

Swift tak 5730 gives a competitive advantage for core winding and slot nozzle application for straight or bendy cold drink straw production, like those often used in juice boxes. Generally, this adhesive comprises less than 5% of the total dried weight of a paper straw—enabling paper straws to be recycled and / or industrially composted.1

This technology allows paper straws to be compliant with German Federal Institute for Risk Assessment (BfR) Food-Contact Recommendation BfRXXXVI (Paper and Board for Food Contact Materials) for food contact to help ensure maximum consumer safety. Although the BfR recommendations are not legal norms, they are widely industry respected throughout the European Union.

“We want to enable the production and use of alternatives in intelligent designs to help create a path toward a better sustainable economy,” says Michel Cordos, H.B. Fuller Technical Manager for Paper Straws. “We are very pleased to present Swift® tak 5730, a more sustainable and safe formulation featuring strong performance while at the same time contributing to the decrease of single-use plastics. Our experts provide on-demand technical support to guide paper straw and equipment manufacturers as well as paper suppliers on how to efficiently produce durable liquid resistant straws at the lowest manufacturer total cost possible to meet this growing market.”

As a leading supplier of adhesives for the paper straw global industry, H.B. Fuller is not only committed to advancing innovations that promote sustainability, but also to participating in the industry discussions to redesign foodservice packaging solutions to lower its environmental footprint. H.B. Fuller is a member of the European non-profit 360° Foodservice association, formerly known as Pack2Go Europe. Together, with paper and equipment suppliers, the association aims to define an industry framework and guideline for high quality paper straws, with minimal waste.

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