Haney, a global leader in package prototyping, has produced first-of-its-kind sustainable fashion packaging for designer Heron Preston using HP Indigo printing and cellulose-based materials from Futamura. The pouches are made of materials certified for compostability using digital technology, a first for the fashion industry, and could replace the plastic bags used in retail packaging.

In collaboration with HP, Heron Preston, an American cultural icon in streetwear fashion, requested sustainable packaging for his designs to explore alternatives for plastic polybags. HP and Heron Preston presented the concept at the Museum of Plastic at Art Basel in Miami on December 5.

“From textiles to packaging, I’ve made it my mission to identify sustainable solutions for the fashion industry,” said Heron Preston. “This collaboration between Heron Preston and HP is a great example of the positive change that can happen when brands come together to support a shared mission.”

Heron Preston and HP produced 200 pouches as part of a limited-edition pilot program, as part of Heron Preston's larger mission to identify sustainable solutions for the fashion industry. The limited-edition, 8. 5 x 13-inch compostable pouches for individually packaged garments feature Preston artwork and are serialized using HP Indigo variable data printing.

Haney used 5-color reverse printing on Futamura’s transparent NatureFlex™ film to ensure ink protection with no scuffing and laminated to a clear NatureFlex liner material, according to Love.

The Cincinnati, Ohio-based Haney produced the packaging on its HP Indigo 20000 Digital Press, acquired one year ago to boost capacity to develop and market innovative packaging solutions. Haney designs and prints both packaging prototypes and pre-commercial sales and test market samples. It turned to Futamura to develop the materials solution.

NatureFlex is a family of bio-based and compostable films manufactured from wood pulp. “Our materials have traditionally been used for food packaging but are now gaining popularity in many markets. NatureFlex offers great product protection and is shelf stable. It will only start to degrade when exposed to moisture and microorganisms in a composting environment, where it can degrade rapidly in as little as 45-60 days,” said Jake Hebert, sales manager at Futamura.