Pringles unveils new ‘designed for recycling’ tube

THE Pringles tube has been given a sustainable redesign with its metal bottom replaced with a paper fibre-based alternative.

Kellanova Europe worked with paperboard container manufacturer, Sonoco, on the redesign.

The firm’s Belgian engineering and R&D teams introduced the new paper sealing technology on production lines in Mechelen, Belgium. The specially designed machines, once fully operational across all production lines, will be able to produce more than one billion ‘perfectly sealed’ recyclable Pringles tubes per year, Kellanova Europe said.

The tube retains the brand’s iconic cylindrical shape, enabling the crisps to remain stacked.

The new paper-based tube protects the chips and preserves the flavour to help keep them as fresh as the day they were made. Consumers can also re-close the tubes with the recyclable plastic lid to ensure the crisps stay fresh after opening.

The tube also takes into account circularity by design guidelines from the European fibre-based packaging value chain, the 4Evergreen alliance, and obtains a good recyclability score for its suitability for recycling in standard paper mills under 4evergreen’s recyclability evaluation protocol.

Kellanova Europe added that the tubes are accepted in recycling streams across Europe, as the new paper end makes it easier to recycle for paper recyclers. The launch follows Kellanova Europe’s trial of a steel can in Italy in 2019 and a paper tube in the UK in 2020. The vast majority of the paper used for the old and new tube is made from recycled material.

Tracy Murphy, senior director of salty snacks at Kellanova Europe, said, “As part of our better days promise, we have been working hard to reduce our environmental footprint. The recyclable Pringles tube is another important step on our sustainable packaging journey. From the trial of the paper tube that we did in 2020, we already know that consumers love the new-look tube, so we’re now very excited that they’ll be able to get their hands on it.”

Seàn Cairns, president of global rigid paper and closures (RPC) at Sonoco, worked with both companies’ technical teams, to develop the new ‘designed for recycling’ Pringles tube.  He said consumers are ‘more aware than ever’ of how their purchasing behaviours are impacting the environment, as well as the more sustainable packaging options available to them.

He added, “With this in mind it’s important for businesses to stay ahead of the curve by exploring new packaging technologies and materials.

“It was a pleasure working with Kellanova and we look forward to seeing how the new paper-based Pringles tube is received by the market. We hope the success of this project inspires other companies and brands to convert to more sustainable packaging.”