We care for safety. Pano at the Interpack and PLMA 2014.

For Pano this year's Interpack in Düsseldorf and the PLMA in Amsterdam a few days later come firmly under the motto of “We care for safety”. Pano's BLUESEAL® is a lug cap that manufacturers and retailers can be sure off – namely for migration-critical specialities such as vegetables or fish in oil, pesto etc.

A study conducted on food from the EU by the Stuttgart CVUA and Zurich Cantonal Investigation Office reveals that EU migration limits are still being exceeded in numerous instances. From 1st January 2016, the PIM (EU 10/2011) will be tightening simulation conditions for migration measurements even further.

The chief arguments for switching to the PVC-free PANO BLUESEAL® closure being to ensure compliance with the current and future even stricter requirements of the legislation, food safety and consumer protection. Play it safe – no PVC, no plasticisers, BPA-NI, migration safety, sustainability. Sound reasons why suppliers of dairy products, of meat products, e.g. sausages, and of organic food should also switch to PVC-free alternatives.


BPA-NI coating systems in the testphase.

In connection with the long-standing and very heated debate on the toxicological effect of Bisphenol A (BPA) on man, France has now created political facts and prohibits its use as a food contact material from 1st January 2015. In line with other EU countries, its use has been prohibited in children's food until now.

Based on their last statement of 30th September 2010, the European Food Safety Authority sees no necessity in amending the specific migration limit of 0.6 mg/kg food (EU Regulation 10/2011) that is currently valid. A new statement is announced for November 2013.

Coatings previously used are also well below the migration limits

At present, the coatings still used by Pano in its closures include epoxy coatings containing Bisphenol A, a common practice in the industry. The raw materials used in these instances meet the legal specifications. Extraction examinations could not determine any Bisphenol A on the inside coatings employed. The content lies below the detection limit. They fall many times below the above-mentioned limits.

Owing to the debate surrounding BPA, we started developing a BPA-NI coating system several years ago, collaborating with the suppliers of our coatings. Previous laboratory trials and filling tests have shown that - particularly in instances of aggressive fillings - no satisfactory corrosion protection has yet been attained that permits endorsement for a shelf-life of three years.

We shall have to conduct further tests so that we are also able to provide our customers with closures for the French market in future. We expect to find a timely solution offering adequate packaging- and food safety.

First BPA-NI sample caps from June 2013

To test resistance regarding the specific needs of customers and fillings, Pano can provide sample caps with the BPA-NI interior coating to all customers for own packing tests from June 2013. Coating changeover is subject to charge. Please get in touch if you are interested in having a supply of sample closures. Pano can also advise you on any issues surrounding execution of the test.


BLUESEAL - even small it's big!

Pano has expanded its range of BLUESEAL® PVC-free lug caps by adding two new sizes - diameters of 38 mm and 48 mm. This has considerably widened the number of possible applications within the BLUESEAL® spectrum. Now, even bottles of spicy sauce such as steak sauce or ketchup, small jars containing delicatessen products, capers, for example, and many glass drink bottles can be closed in this environmentally-friendly way. Particularly with its 48 mm-sized closures, Pano now offers the dairy industry an alternative to capping returnable milk bottles. Several well-known dairies are already using the Pano BLUESEAL® for yoghurts in the 500 g returnable jars.

After adding further production lines to the company's new plant in Itzehoe, Pano now has an annual capacity of around 300 million BLUESEAL® closures. Distribution has been extended on a global scale. In China, Southern Europe and even in South America, BLUESEAL® meets with positive response.

In addition to specialists such as Lee Kum Kee with Chinese sauces and Vanelli with anchovies in jars, several Italian and German manufacturers of pesto and pasta sauces now also number amongst BLUESEAL®'s customers.

Precluding contaminant migration into the filling, the BLUESEAL® closure seal is PVC- and plasticizer-free. Further benefits also include: No environmental pollution by emissions, a lower energy consumption in closure production and problem-free recycling.

Sizes of BLUESEAL® currently available are 38, 48, 53, 58, 63, 66 and 70 mm. A 77 mm size is to follow in the latter half of 2013. BLUESEAL® closures with a diameter of 82 mm will be first available in early 2014. The Pano BLUESEAL® closure can be closed using regular glass capping machines so that no further investment in equipment is necessary. The Pano technicians will be happy to assist with trials.


Becoming increasingly more popular: Jar closures without PVC and plasticizers

Every year, more than 20 billion closures are produced for glass jars in Europe. Of these, around 3.5 billion are used by manufacturers for oily and fatty food products. Until recently, there was no other alternative to closures with a seal made of PVC.

Plasticizers need to be added to make PVC supple. But health risks could not be safely excluded from any of the substances. Indeed, the EU adopted regulations to limit transfer of plasticizers into food. However, limit values always assume that only a certain quantity of a food is consumed. In practice, this can be quite different.

In the last few years, repeatedly severe levels of contamination through plasticizers has been found in oily and fatty foods. Baby porridge, pesto, pasta sauces and tuna in oil, for example, were affected.

Since oils and fats promote migration into the filling it is extremely difficult for manufacturers involved in this to comply with the migration limits laid down in Europe. In view of the quantities produced annually, manufacturers are at great risk of running into conflict with the determinations.

While crown corks are almost exclusively PVC-free nowadays, it is only recently that jar closures have come up for review. Pano, the German closure manufacturer, has been providing impetus with the world's first PVC-free twist-off lug cap, Pano BLUESEAL®. The seal is made from Provalin®, a material based on thermoplastic elastomers, which remains supple without the need for plasticizers. Thanks to Pano Blueseal, compliance with all migration regulations is easily achievable, even with small packs and unfavourable general conditions.

Increasing numbers of food manufacturers are now focusing on the PVC-free closure. Dittmann, the German deli brand, was there from the start and, as a result, played a large role in developing Pano Blueseal. German organic brands such as Andechser in the yoghurt sector, Zwergenwiese, Bruno Fischer, Tartex and Isana equally use the closures nowadays, followed by producers from Italy, Spain, Greece and Turkey.

The Chinese have also recognised the value of the PVC-free BLUESEAL® closures. Lee Kum Kee, a specialist in Chinese sauces, was the first Chinese company to accept costs involved in switching.

Pano assists interested manufacturers in changing from conventional closures to Pano BLUESEAL®. Similar to conventional twist-off lug caps, Pano BLUESEAL® is equally suitable for hot and cold filling, pasteurisation and sterilisation, is also available with and without buttons and can be processed in all steam vacuum sealing machines. It is also available in every requested varnish and print finish. To differentiate Pano BLUESEAL® from previous closures, the sealing compound has been coloured blue.

Recognising a PVC-free and plasticizer-free product on the supermarket shelf from its external appearance, is quite likely to be a key factor, particularly for health- and environmentally conscious consumers. For this reason, Pano is offering to put a PVC-free label on the closure for its customers. Or alternatively, it would also be possible to mark the jar label. What is key here is that the consumer immediately knows: He is in safe hands here.