At K 2019, Dow introduced a new optical finishing for polyethylene (PE)-based packaging to support brand owners and converters in addressing recyclability targets. The new OPULUX™ HGT Optical Finishes can help replace PE/PET or PE/BOPP laminated packaging structures with a PE-based concept that offers high thermal and chemical resistance and delivers excellent optics.

The finishes, which are suitable for many packaging formats and most common coating and packaging equipment, has been recognized as a breakthrough technology at this year’s Edison Awards in the bronze category. 

“We’re constantly looking at ways to re-think the status-quo of packaging to advance the circular economy,” said Izzat Midani, marketing manager EMEA at Dow Packaging and Specialty Plastics. “With OPULUX HGT we are able to simplify the packaging structure to help enable recyclability while maintaining the shelf appeal of the final package.” 

OPULUX HGT is a high-temperature, high-gloss varnish applied to surface-printed PE films of flexible packaging. It allows for broadening the processing window of the films and helps expanding the PE film performance. While replacing laminated substrates like OPET and BOPP in the outer layers with a monoply PE-based film, structure simplification and high conversion efficiency are accomplished. Converters can leave out the lamination step and benefit from a wider coating weight range as well as reduced wash downs.

By combining the optical finishes with Dow’s innovative PE-based polymer solutions, brand owners and converters can redesign packaging for recyclability and achieve key packaging properties such as stiffness and dimensional stability, as well as glossy finishing for excellent packaging appearance on the shelf, heat resistance and a high sealing window for packaging efficiency.