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Project name:

Developing a new sustainable packaging material for dietary supplements* in sachet and pouch formats to optimise recycling, while maintaining product stability

Status: Idea
Creation date: 22-11-2022

Project objectives:

BACKGROUND OF THE PROBLEM

Swisse is a premium health and wellness global powerhouse, established in Australia in 1959, with presence in 14 countries including Singapore. Swisse has a wide range of products under dietary supplements, with numerous product formats such as capsule, tablet, chewable tablet, gummies, powder and jelly.

At Swisse, our sustainability impact areas are integral to everything we do, and that includes Reducing our Footprint on The Planet. Packaging plays an important role in ensuring stability of active ingredients in our formulations, and we continually aim to identify and implement packaging solutions which are more environmentally friendly.

In 2021, we introduced a new 5Rs packaging framework which has now been applied to our new product development process - prioritising the sustainable practices of Reduce, Renew, Recycle, Reuse and Regenerate. An example of our new product guided by this framework was the new Swisse Earth range – consciously packed with sustainably sourced packaging, made mainly from bio-based packaging materials, with the primary packaging canister made from 70% recycled paper, and it is fully recyclable.

Challenge

While packaging formats such as sachets and pouches offer convenience to consumers, it remains a challenge to make them recyclable due to the presence of an aluminum layer in the packaging, commonly used to ensure that the product is stable for a duration of more than 6-12 months. For example, jelly stick packaging material often uses PET12/AL7/NY15/LLDPE50. In addition, it is also important to maintain product stability of remaining pieces after opening the pack, meant for more than 1 day serving.

Swisse would like to find a sustainable sachet / pouch format for dietary supplement, with a target shelf life of 24 months.

TECHNICAL REQUIREMENTS / PERFORMANCE CRITERIA:

Swisse will be evaluating the solution providers on a case-by-case basis. Generally speaking, we will be looking at the following requirements and criteria:

Performance Criteria:

  • Intended use for sachet/ pouch: store 2-15 pieces of dietary supplements in product formats including tablet, chewable tablet, capsule
  • Solution should optimise recycling and minimise environmental impact, guided by our 5Rs packaging framework:
    1. Reduce: Reduce the amount of material to minimise environmental impacts throughout the packaging lifecycle and also to reduce costs. Reduce the bulk, shipping and other logistics packaging where possible
    2. Renew: Optimise the proportion of materials that are renewable - materials composed of biomass from a living source that can be continually replenished. Consider a whole-of-life cycle approach
    3. Recycle: Optimise recycling by using recyclable materials; avoiding materials or components that may contaminate the recycling process, and by facilitating consumer options to recycle. Utilise recycled materials as inputs in our packaging to reduce the amount of virgin materials created
    4. Reuse: Extend the life of packaging through multiple uses and the opportunity for consumers to reuse (refillable options)
    5. Regenerate: Optimise the ability of packaging to be reutilised (or break down) through composting or other organic recycling processes such as energy recovery
  • The solution needs to be compatible with our current Contract Manufacturers' existing production lines without the purchase of new equipment

Technical requirements:

  • Demonstrate solution's ability to maintain physical integrity and product stability for dietary supplements (for different supplement formats, or equivalent) for at least 3 months data. Final commercial product needs to be stable for at least 24 months shelf life ideally
  • Share specification of material including water and oxygen transmission, mechanical strength, seal integrity under various humidity and temperature conditions (especially high moisture and temperature)
  • Ability to withstand Southeast Asia weather conditions. Sharing of existing stability data based on Southeast Asia Zone IVB conditions is a bonus.

Others:

  • Ability to provide the following will be a bonus:
    • solution can be used for other product formats such as gummies, powder and jelly;
    • include a resealable mechanism in the solution; and
    • show prototype of solution

COST TARGET

The cost of the solution will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis.

  • Estimated packaging cost should be reasonable and competitive with the market offering
  • No additional capital expenditure needed to deploy the solution with existing production lines

TIMEFRAME FOR DEVELOPMENT

Phase 1: PoC/trial to be conducted (for a period of 6 months or thereabouts)

Phase 2: Further commercial roll-out. Timeline to be discussed on a case-by-case basis (with the aim to fully commercialise by 2024)

POTENTIAL MARKET / BUSINESS OPPORTUNITY

We provide solution providers with the opportunity to develop and launch the solution together with Swisse for small-sized sachet/pouch for tablet and capsules. Afterwards, there is the potential to extend to other product formats such as powder, jelly and gummy. Deployment will start with Southeast Asia, but has the potential to scale and be utilised by Swisse globally, and for future innovation.

RESOURCES

  • Swisse is willing to invest in product trials and test out the stability of the new material, worth up to S$60,000
  • Collaboration opportunity and support from Swisse for research and product development
  • Winner of the Challenge will also receive S$5,000 prize money as project seeding fund

OTHER CONSIDERATIONS

  • We welcome proposals from global suppliers
  • H&H Group is a global health and nutrition company with three business segments - Baby, Adult and Pet Nutrition and Care - supporting whole-family health and happiness, with premium brands providing nutrition and wellness solutions backed by science. Our consumer brands include Biostime, Swisse, Zesty Paws, Solid Gold Pet, Dodie, Good Goût, Aurelia London and CBII. Find out more about Swisse and H&H's sustainability efforts here: https://www.hh.global/#/SustainabilityAtH&H
  • Opportunity for solution to be scaled and extended to other H&H consumer brands as well

 

Contact / source: Enterprise Singapore Sustainability Open Innovation Challenge - Sustainability Open Innovation Challenge 2022 (innovation-challenge.sg)

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