The innovation consists of plastic packaging, which is not only recycled but also 100% suitable for food contact (liquid and solid). As a result, it is engaging in a more responsible consumption and production of resources and with a clear connection to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) 12. Moreover, it facilitates making cities and communities more sustainable and cleaner, which again connects to SDG 11.
Chiara Di Giacinto
Hanken School of Economics
Food Entertainment is not only a C.I.E.R. brand, but also a driving force for its entire staff who wants to imagine their product not just as a simple wrapping, but as a way to enhance living. The solution is not only to keep food in its best condition and preserve its taste, but also to protect it from all adversities: this is the mission that the packaging department sets for each production. Today's food is the result of the sacrifices of a very long sustainable supply chain, from farmers and breeders to the producers of high quality food. Food Entertainment wants to give all people the possibility to enjoy safe and durable food anywhere on the globe.
Food Entertainment innovation is a rigid PET film packaged on reels. It can be a single layer, made from virgin polymer, or three layers, with the outer layers made from virgin polymer and the inner layer made from recycled polymer. The virgin polymer can be replaced with a recycled-PET granule at the customer's request. Particularly suitable for food contact, it is used for thermoforming packaging for the food industry.
In the range of its production, C.I.E.R.´s packaging division offers the market numerous targeted and customized solutions. They also offer various other films all with different attributes and usability.
The main motivation and inspiration behind the innovation was to contribute to a better environment at the grassroots level. The company wants to contribute towards less waste, reduction of single-used plastic and to be part of a circular economy which produces less CO2 emissions and products with a higher durability. Also, because of the dramatically rise of food waste C.I.E.R also made it its mission to reduce it and developed this innovation even further in terms of the food perseverance. Consequently, the entire C.I.E.R. workforce was involved in the innovation. From the owner, to the laboratory team, as well as of course the research and development department, the production team and the employees working in the offices.
The innovation provides a solution on a rather local level, as the company's main market is Italy and partially in Europe. The company provides day-to-day solutions in the short run and an excellent example on how to proceed on sustainable targets in the long run since C.I.E.R is already 25 years old. For example, in Italy there are several companies who recycle plastic, but only a few companies who have such advanced plastic recycling methods, let alone on a European or global level.
The innovation and the solutions cover largely the following two Sustainable Development Goals: number 11 and 12. The first focuses on achieving the goal of “Sustainable cities and communities – to make cities and settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable”. The second has a focus on “Responsible consumption and production – ensure sustainable consumption and production patterns” (UN General Assembly, 2015). With recycling and renewable material, the company is actively promoting sustainability. The amount of recycled plastic last year (2020) equals roughly 50 thousand tons, and an output of 35-40 thousand tons of plastic, of which 30 thousand tons are used for food packaging.
C.I.E.R., including Food Entertainment, generates profitability thanks to its innovative product and technological advantage which allowed them to position themselves as one of the driving forces in the market. They are currently developing a new method of recycling plastic and also continue to further develop their existing techniques. The constant drive for innovation allows them to accomplish growth and to achieve their goals of reducing food consumption and plastic waste. They now have around 80 people working in their company, and are able to steadily increase their annual revenue and continue to grow each year. This is also due to the circular economy they are part of. Also, a fourth of all revenue is generated by Food Entertainment.
Recycling in general and increasing the possibilities of reusing plastic, has a great impact on society and the environment. They recycle over 40 thousand tons of plastic each year and they reduce food loss by over 35 thousand tons per year. All those numbers are increasing steadily. This innovation is also a great contributor for decreasing the use of virgin plastics polymers and similar plastic because they reuse already existing forms of plastic. By using 100 % PET, they show society that a change in our everyday living is possible and can even be good for business and the environment as well as the people living on this planet. C.I.E.R. therefore contributes to social factors like their employee’s job security and their well-being. Overall, from the interview it became clear that they are proud of their completed transformation towards a circular economy business model, and they clearly have their focus on resources, decreasing CO2 emissions and engaging and sustaining the planet in terms of the Sustainable Development Goals.
Fabrizio Tassinari, Senior Executive Officer
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Castellalto, Italy, IT
Business Website: http://www.foodentertainment.it
Year Founded: 1999
Number of Employees: 51 to 200
Food Entertainment is a brand owned by C.I.E.R. in Italy, which deals with the recycling of plastics such as PET. They produce second raw material in an efficient and sustainable way. C.I.E.R. is a manufacturing company that recovers plastic waste by transforming it into granules, flakes or recycled plastic reels, through consolidated know-how and modern processes which are constantly further developed.