During the 2016 New Year reception, PlasticsEurope, together with the Society of Plastics Engineers (SPE), announced the winners of the first European Plastics Innovations Awards on 25 January in Brussels.
The awards, presented in seven different categories, recognize companies demonstrating outstanding and highly innovative developments in the field of plastics technology.
In his opening remarks, Patrick Thomas, President of PlasticsEurope and CEO of Covestro, declared that the plastics industry was at the forefront of innovation in Europe. “With 1 out of 25 patents coming from the industry, plastics are at the heart of many of today’s technological advances,” he emphasized. “Ongoing investment in innovation is essential if we want to tackle some of the major challenges Europe is facing today.”
Another speaker, Kurt Vandenberghe, Director for Climate Action and Resource Efficiency, DG Research and Innovation, European Commission, addressed the importance of research and innovation to ensure the competitiveness of Europe. “Europe needs more innovation for the creation of jobs and growth. Only by fostering innovation we will turn sustainability into a competitive advantage,” he said.
The actual awards ceremony was performed by SPE CEO Willem De Vos, who presented each of the seven winners with a trophy, specifically designed for the occasion.
The award for the category Best Plastic Design went to a design in bioplastic: DSM Engineering Plastics won the trophy for a high performance edging chassis for a mountaineering shoe from Salomon, made from its biobased polyamide EcoPaXX®. According to the jury, “EcoPaXX made it possible for Salomon to produce a chassis with an intricate design that is light, has the necessary mix of flexibility and rigidity, retains its properties at very low temperatures typical of mountain environments, and has reduced moisture uptake, despite being a polyamide. The material is very suitable for injection molding and is certified as carbon neutral from cradle to gate.”
The winners in the other categories were:
- Best Design for End-of-Life: Top Clean Packaging (France), Wine/Champagne Pack
- Material Innovation: Evonik Industries (Germany), VESTAMID® NRG
- Hybrid Product: DuPont International Operations (Switzerland), Offshore Mooring Tether Incorporating Wave Protection for Floating Structures
- Best Substitute Product for Enhanced Sustainability: Dow Europe (Switzerland), Flexible Bottle with PacXPERT Packaging Technology
- Best Lightweight Innovation: Treofan/Borealis (Germany/Austria), PHD1.9 –Polypropylene Capacitor Film of 1.9 μm thickness
- New Surfaces for Plastics Parts: Borealis Polyolefine (Austria), Lightweight Primerless Paintable Bumper
The next edition of the European Plastics Innovation Awards will take place mid-2017 and the call for parts will be sent out towards the end of this year.