Enhancing Sustainability: Barrier Coatings for Eco-Friendly Paper Packaging

Enhancing Sustainability: Barrier Coatings for Eco-Friendly Paper Packaging 


Paper and paperboard are stalwarts in the packaging world. They are lightweight, versatile, and often recyclable. But sometimes, plain paper just won’t cut it Food spoils, liquids leak, and certain products require extra protection. Here’s where barrier coatings step in, transforming paper and paperboard into high-performance packaging solutions. 

Barrier coatings improve the performance of paper and paperboard substrates by forming a protective barrier against moisture, oil, and other environmental contaminants. These coatings serve an important role in increasing packaging durability and maintaining product integrity. 

The goal is to gain valuable insights into the evolving Technology landscape of Barrier coatings for paper and paperboard substrates, considering recent developments and prospects.


  • Moisture infiltration: Standard paper packaging frequently lets moisture in, increasing the chance of spoiling, especially in the food and beverage industries. 
  • Grease absorption: Paper’s absorbent nature can result in grease leaking through, affecting the quality of items like fast food or oily snacks. 
  • Environmental concerns: The disposal of standard paper packaging may contribute to pollution, prompting the search for eco-friendly alternatives. 

Why Use Barrier Coatings?

  • Barrier coatings improve the performance of paper and paperboard by making them more resistant to moisture and grease.  
  • They help to increase shelf life, improve visual appeal, and reduce waste and spoilage in packaging. 

Different types of barrier coatings based on function: 

  • Water-based coatings (environmentally friendly) 
  • Polyethylene (PE) coatings (excellent moisture barrier) 
  • Ethylene Vinyl Alcohol (EVOH) coatings (high oxygen barrier) 
  • Bio-based wax coatings (sustainable alternative) 


At Signicent, we specialize in providing technology intelligence related solutions to our clients, helping them stay informed about the latest technologies and novel concepts, sourced from research papers, articles, patents, and more. These resources span across diverse industries and originate from sources such as R&D groups and institutes. 

  • Nano-coatings: Advanced nano-scale coatings provide superior protection against moisture, grease, and other hazards. 
  • Bio-based Formulations: Emerging bio-based coatings offer sustainable alternatives derived from renewable sources. 
  • Hybrid Solutions: Combining materials like bio-based components and nano-technology results in versatile barrier coatings with enhanced properties. 

Where do Barrier Coatings Shine? 

Barrier coatings are utilized in various industries, including food packaging, beverage packaging, pharmaceutical packaging, and industrial applications to extend shelf life, protect against leaks, contamination, and corrosion. 

Different Properties & its Applications: 

  • Hydrophobicity: Cups, Milk cartons, Baking paper, Fast food containers. 
  • Antimicrobial: Milk cartons, Fast food containers, Cosmetics. 
  • UV Light Barrier: Electronics. 
  • Gas Barrier: Milk cartons, Fast food containers. 
  • Moisture Vapor Barrier: Baking paper. 
  • Oil and Grease Barrier: Fast food containers. 
  • Cohesive Strength: Cups, Milk cartons, Fast food containers, Cosmetics, Pet food. 
  • Aroma and Odor Barrier: Milk cartons, Fast food containers, Cosmetics. 

Through comprehensive technology gap analysis we can identify areas where our clients can improve their competitive edge and capitalize on emerging opportunities.   

Food Packaging: 

Conventional polyethylene-coated paper provides excellent moisture barrier but lacks sufficient oxygen barrier, leading to food decay.

Hansol Paper Co. developed a barrier laminate with paper substrate and a water barrier coating, offering improved gas and moisture barrier properties while reducing carbon emissions. 

Paper Board packaging: 

Cellulose fibers in paper packaging, naturally hydrophilic due to glucose content, absorb water, reducing physical and mechanical properties. 

University of Tehran, Iran, developed an aqueous dispersion barrier coating with soy protein and oxidized polyethylene wax, enhancing barrier properties like water vapor permeability (WVP) and water resistance in the coating.  

Merger and Acquisition: 

Solenis International completed the acquisition of 100 percent of the shares of Topchim on March 7, 2018.  

The purchase of Topchim represents Solenis’ commitment to new and innovative technologies and acquisition will enable Solenis to serve the growing barrier coatings market while maintaining our commitment to environmental sustainability. 

Solenis: A Leading global producer of specialty chemicals for water-intensive industries, with a focus on sustainable solutions for pulp, packaging, paper, and more. 

Topchim: A Belgium-based chemical company specializing in eco-friendly coating technology for paper and board production. 

Each year Signicent provides consultancy to hundreds of organizations to help transform their innovations to value.

Market Research: 

According to Market Research Global Barrier Coatings Market revenue for Paper & Paperboard is expected to expand at a CAGR of 5.5% from US$ 5.02 Bn in 2024 to reach value of US$ 6.29 Bn by 2029 over the forecast period. 

Key players: 

This section of the report focuses on competitive intelligence to find some of the topmost key-player companies working in the sector Paramelt Bv, Cortec corporation, Stora Enso, Dow chemical company. 

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