Industry News | September 15, 2008

Freshens Launches 'Ecotainer'

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Freshëns is launching a fully renewable and compostable paper cold cup “ecotainer.” The new ecotainer Paper Cold Cup will replace existing polystyrene foam cups used by the foodservice retailer in all locations across the country. Set to debut in September in select Freshëns stores and nationwide in the fall, ecotainer will be the cornerstone of Freshëns sustainability initiative, "It’s In Our Nature," based on the cup’s fiber and coating sourced from sustainably-grown, renewable resources.

Freshëns is the first national retail brand to introduce the ecotainer Paper Cold Cup throughout its system. This launch represents the first large-scale cold cup introduction with a material of this type in the marketplace. And because this cup performs in a manner identical to traditional standard paper cold cups, consumers do not need to make compromises in the areas of aesthetics or function.

In a standard paper cold cup, the paperboard used is coated with a petrochemical based plastic, polyethylene, to make it liquid resistant. However, this cup uses Polylactic Acid (PLA) to create a water-resistant barrier on the paperboard. PLA is a biopolymer derived from plant sugars. The coating is not water soluble and will not dissolve in use with hot or cold beverages. On the other hand, it can be consumed by microbes over time in a municipal compost environment.

“Premiering the first compostable and fully renewable cold cup is an honor for us,” says Freshëns Quality Brands President John Stern. “Though the cup does cost a little more, we believe it is an imperative element not only in our own corporate responsibility but in that of our industry.”