Packaging materials manufacturer DS Smith is to invest heavily in new converting machinery at its Eerbeek packaging plant in the Netherlands, which it says is in response to the growing demand for sustainable plastic replacement and fibre-based packaging solutions.

The new four-colour converting machine, costing €6 million ($6,513,000), will produce European Federation of Corrugated Board Manufacturers (Fefco) 0201 bespoke boxes for customers as well as alternative grades.

The new machine, which is currently in start-up phase, is equipped with an advanced automatic inline error detection system. It will enable DS Smith to check print and gluing quality and accuracy, while bringing precision to die-cutting. The company said the converter will further improve on quality production, enhance customer satisfaction, reduce waste and lower energy consumption.

Philip Bautil, managing director of DS Smith Benelux, commented, ‘This investment underscores our dedication to delivering high-quality packaging solutions that meet the needs of our customers while contributing to a more sustainable future. 

‘With this new investment we are continuing to meet our customers supply chain challenges and respond to their requirements for growth. We are still seeing an increased demand for products that require sustainable plastic replacement and fibre-based solutions. 

‘It is always our intention to inspire and invite our customers to innovate and imagine ways in which we can jointly develop packaging innovations with circularity and the circular economy at the heart of our present and future focused discussions.’ 

DS Smith sets the new capability within the context of its circular business model. The company launched its Now & Next sustainability strategy in 2020 and set near and long-term targets including the removal of one billion items of problem plastics from supermarket shelves by 2025.