The blister pack can now be made totally in paperboard due to an invention by Norwegian converter Moltzau.
The company created the Cefapac to improve both the pack’s environmental performance and its openability, and has already won awards.
Blister packs are made to hang on a holder in the retail store and often consist of a paperboard backing plus a moulded transparent plastic front section to display the product to the consumer.
“Our development work had two starting points – environmental impact and ease of opening,” Moltzau's R&D head Eirik Faukland said.
“To get around the well-known problem of the extreme difficulty of opening plastic blister packs, the basic concept was to replace the plastic with paperboard.
"We chose to replace all the traditional creases with perforations, which gives the desired openability.”
However, when perforations replace creases, the risk is that they cannot protect the pack’s contents well enough. The choice of which paperboard to use was crucial.
“Invercote’s superior tear strength is a prerequisite for a good-quality pack,” Faukland said.
“Both the strength and how it performs in the various stages of converting and filling are crucial.”
He says another benefit is that in the packs Moltzau has produced so far, the perforations have allowed the customer to increase the speed of the filling lines compared with those using creased packaging blanks.
Ski wax manufacturer Swix is currently packing some of its waxes in Cefapacs and plans to expand the trial.