This is a brand-new Muoto gift packaging prototype, made of material that can replace plastic where it is not needed.
Plastic-free and diverse Muoto
Pure, safe, sustainable and fully recyclable. That is what the gift packaging prototype for Fiskars ReNew scissors, featuring a box made of Metsä Board’s folding boxboard and an innovative Muoto inner packaging mirroring the shape of the scissors, is all about.
“Plastic is everywhere, and while it will continue to play a role in the future, there are countless end uses in which we can use a renewable and recyclable bioproduct instead of plastic,” says Tarja Heikkilä, Product Manager at Metsä Group’s innovation company Metsä Spring.
The many shapes of Muoto
Renewable and sustainably grown Finnish wood is the main raw material of the Muoto packaging. The packaging is made of wet wood-fibre pulp in Äänekoski, at Metsä Group and Valmet’s joint demo plant.
“Muoto packages are pressed into their final form using moulds made by Valmet and a new technology that enables the production of rounded, complex shapes familiar from the plastics industry,” says Heikkilä.
Heidi Pitkänen, Business Development Manager (Molded Fiber Products), and Niina Merilaita, R&D Engineer, both from Valmet Services, explain that the moulds enable the use of more advanced geometry and complex packaging structures in one-piece wood-based packages – without seams and joints.
Lightweight and resistant
The new production technology can be used to create lightweight yet stiff packaging structures offering good protective properties.
“The Muoto inner packaging features a three-layered structure. In the test runs, we sought stiffness and rigidity suitable for the high-quality scissor package – as well as a smooth, clean white surface,” says Veli-Matti Hulkko, Metsä Spring’s Technology Manager, the head of the demo plant’s technology team.
All shapes are possible
The 3D fibre packaging concept, designed jointly by Metsä Spring, Metsä Board, Valmet and Fiskars Group, found its shape at Metsä Board’s Excellence Centre, which offers an environment for investigating, innovating and testing future material and packaging solutions based on renewable fresh fibre.
“The end result is a gift packaging prototype that is perfectly suited for the iconic scissors,” says Hulkko.
According to Hulkko, the prototype mirroring the shape of the scissors is the demo plant’s most challenging Muoto project to date. Before it, the twelve-month-old demo line had been used for more simply shaped products – such as plates.
“The moulds for the scissor package were very good. The demo plant’s production machine immediately delivered a high-quality, successfully shaped inner packaging for the scissor package. This achievement made us confident about the future.”
Merilaita and Pitkänen from Valmet agree.
“This material, the production technology, and our good and close cooperation enable us to set more ambitious targets and produce all the complex shapes familiar from the plastics industry – only more sustainably.”