Canadian Packaging

Dow Endows For Sustainable Packaging Research


November 18, 2009
by Canadian Packaging Staff

A gift of more than US$120,000 in laboratory equipment from The Dow Chemical Company will assist Michigan State University (MSU) in establishing a planned Center for Packaging Innovation and Sustainability on campus. The equipment will help researchers associated with the center develop technologies for improving the environmental impact of product packaging and production processes.

“Dow is both pleased and proud to provide equipment that supports Michigan State University’s efforts to advance sustainable packaging research,” says Greg Jozwiak, senior global business director at Dow.

"Sustainable packaging is an important topic these days, as some consumers and legislators see packaging as waste and wish to minimize it or take it away entirely,” Jozwiak adds. “It is up to the entire packaging industry, including research organizations, to demonstrate that packaging is actually a waste reducer at many different levels. Continued research in this area, paired with a healthy pipeline of material innovation, will lead to packaging advancements that help enhance the sustainability of packaging and thus the important role that it plays in our everyday lives.”

The Dow donation will provide the center with advanced technology for bench research and testing of packaging materials. Among the testing instruments being donated are a moving die rheometer (MDR), impact testers, a plasti-corder, an extrusion plastometer and a computer imaging microscope. These exacting detection and measurement instruments are critical to data collection and validation in packaging research.

"We are very grateful to Dow for this donation of laboratory equipment," states Jeffrey Armstrong, dean of the MSU College of Agriculture and Natural Resources. "It provides the cutting-edge tools needed to advance critical work that will have global implications for improving packaging performance and sustainability."

The Center for Packaging Innovation and Sustainability, initiated with a gift from the Coca-Cola Company, will provide a platform that brings together scientists from a variety of disciplines at MSU and in industry to undertake research and education to measure and reduce packaging’s environmental impact. It will involve the MSU colleges of Agriculture and Natural Resources (School of Packaging), Engineering and the Eli Broad College of Business (Department of Supply Chain Management).

Established in 1952, the MSU School of Packaging is the first and largest packaging program in the U.S. The school supports the packaging industry through education, research and outreach focused on solving problems and developing improved technology.

More information about Dow can be found at www.dow.com. You can also visit MSU’s School of Packaging at www.packaging.msu.edu.