Italian caps and closures specialist Labrenta has unveiled new products in line with its sustainable development roadmap, Labrenta Green Deal 2030. The innovations are developed with Mixcycling, a start-up focused on integrating production by-products into closures.
Labrenta is introducing new luxury closures for wines and spirits packaging that cut down on plastic and make use of production byproducts. They are developed with Mixcycling, a start-up first founded by Labrenta in 2019 and later spun off, that aims to give a second life to industrial waste.
Gipy Monolith is a collection of screw caps targeting the spirits market. In addition to cork, the caps will integrate grape marc, rice husks, bamboo and even denim. The by-products are blended with polymers via the patented Mixcycling technology. “These can be recycled, biodegradable or virgin,” explains Labrenta. “The organic material, once ennobled, replaces the polluting components.”
Agro-industrial fibers resulting from production are selected, ground and then separated according to their granulometry. A second step “reactivates” the fibers via a patented process, readying them for an even closer bond to the polymer base. “The result is a new blend with high technical and aesthetic performances, sanitized and purified from odors and volatile compounds,” the company says.
Labrenta’s second innovation is the inclusion of its patented Sughera material, which combines natural cork grains and plastic polymers, into its T-shape collection for spirits. “Sughera already exists, but we have improved the technology,” Labrenta explains. The stem of the glue-free T-shape will be made of Sughera, while the head can be in wood, plastic or aluminum. The closure can also be entirely produced with Sughera. In terms of decoration, pad printing, hot foil printing, heat transfer, embossing and debossing are all possible.
“Sughera is resistant, it doesn't crumble, and there is no color release or loss, making it the perfect closure to preserve spirits, but also wine,” the company says of the product.
Labrenta CEO Gianni Tagliapietra said in a statement that the company has increased its investment in Mixcycling. “We believe that Mixcycling will be one of the leading companies in the transition to material decarbonisation from now until 2050,” he commented. “During 2021 we replaced 18% of the plastic materials used with low impact-products made by Mixcycling. This allowed us to use 38,550kg less plastic and cut emissions by more than 10%.”
Labrenta declined to comment on the amount of its new investment in Mixcycling, or the size of its stake in the company.