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Packaging of the month: paper cups for the vegan butter alternative Flora

Packaging of the month: paper cups for the vegan butter alternative Flora

Away from plastic, towards paper: food manufacturer Upfield has recently started offering its vegan butter alternative Flora in an environmentally friendly paper cup. We are honoring the innovative packaging solution for this specific product group by naming it packaging of the month.

What is Flora?

Flora is the brand name for a purely plant-based butter alternative that is available in Austria. Unlike traditional butter, the product is not made from cow’s milk, but from various vegetable fats and oils. Specifically, it consists of rapeseed, coconut and sunflower oil in varying proportions by weight, supplemented with drinking water, field beans, lecithins, natural flavors, carotene and glucose. Flora does not contain any animal ingredients and is therefore suitable for vegans. Since the end of 2023, Flora has been offered not only as a block, but also in a paper cup.

Features of the paper cup

The paper cup for Flora is a molded fiber packaging with a snap-on lid. It is the first paper-based solution for spreadable grease and picks up on the trend towards sustainable packaging materials, within which paperization is particularly important. The plastic-free packaging is considered robust, leak-proof and recyclable via the paper garbage can. With these properties, it meets all the key requirements that modern, environmentally conscious consumers value.

Philosophy, development and goals

As a leading producer of plant-based foods, Upfield believes it has a responsibility to make a positive impact on the world. As plastic waste is one of the most pressing problems on earth, the company has decided to develop the first plastic-free packaging for spreadable fat. The paper cup for the plant-based butter alternative Flora is the result of years of research. Upfield plans to package other products in its own brand portfolio in paper in the near future, such as Rama spreads. The aim is to avoid more than 25,000 tons of plastic waste every year. The manufacturer wants to reduce the proportion of plastic in its own products by 80 percent by 2030.

The company behind Flora

Flora is one of many brands under the umbrella of Upfield Holdings. The multinational food manufacturer is headquartered in the Netherlands. It was founded in July 2018 and was created through the spin-off and sale of the former spreads division of the British Unilever Group. The focus at Upfield is on plant-based spreads, especially margarines.

Conclusion and outlook

What started a few months ago in Austria is set to become a global project: So far, the paper cup only wraps the vegan margarine Flora; however, it is highly likely that in the near future we will increasingly encounter spreadable fats in paper packaging in Germany and other countries, whether from Upfield brands or other brands. In this sense, we are probably not exaggerating when we already recognize Flora and Upfield as pioneers in this field.

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