Green Innovation and Zero Waste for Flo

At HostMilano 2019 Flo will present GEA Calix: a Nespresso compatible coffee capsule with up to 100% biobased content, compostable with food waste. Flo’s new developments will be presented in a unique 3D printed stand made using post-production remnants.

MINNETONKA, Minn., & PARMA, Italy–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Flo S.p.A., a major European food packaging producer increasingly engaged in research of sustainable high-quality products, is proud to introduce three new capsule formats in the GEA family that are industrially compostable, fully biobased, and able to provide a brewing experience that is expected of the most popular capsules on the market.

Building on the success and adoption of the GEA compostable version for the A Modo Mio system, Flo again partnered with NatureWorks – a leading company in the production of functional biomaterials – to develop new GEA capsules suitable for Nespresso, Lavazza Blue, and Keurig systems.

The entire family of GEA compostable coffee capsules will all be on display in Flo’s booth at HostMilano from October 18-22, 2019.

The GEA capsules are all made with Ingeo™, a renewably sourced biomaterial from NatureWorks that can be used for all parts of a coffee capsule from lidding to filters to the capsule body.

“The creation of new GEA capsules is the result of great and well-organized teamwork,” explains Erika Simonazzi, Marketing Manager of Flo S.p.A. “Coffee capsules are complex products and creating a compostable, high performing solution required significant investment and expertise. This could only happen when two companies, like ours, are dedicated to cooperation and the development of applications that meet the needs of the growing circular economy.”

Thanks to strategic investments, the opening of two cutting-edge laboratories, and a great team, Flo can provide its customers scientific data that demonstrates how their coffee performs in Flo’s compostable capsule formats.

Using the new laboratory capabilities, all the GEA capsules have been tuned to achieve the ideal pressure needed to deliver a coffee from every capsule that is perfectly brewed for maximum taste, crema, and aroma. New data also demonstrates that the GEA capsules deliver excellent oxygen barrier, material ageing stability, and shelf-life all in a biobased, industrially compostable format.

Recent testing with Accademia Italiana Maestri del Caffè (AICAF) has also verified that the GEA capsules maintain the flavor and aroma of the coffee for over 11 months with testing still ongoing. This type of performance meets the needs of the most demanding coffee roasters and consumers.

“Sustainability has always been one of the top items in any coffee roaster’s agenda,” explains Flavio Di Marcotullio, Global Industry Leader at NatureWorks. “We are delighted to observe how the coffee industry is now fully embracing industrial compostability as the preferred recovery option for coffee capsules. Today, thanks to the collaboration between Flo and NatureWorks, roasters finally have access to a capsule that not only is certified compostable, biobased, and food-contact approved, but also has demonstrated measurable performance that allows consumers to brew the perfect coffee at home.”

Recycling Post-Industrial GEA Capsule Materials for 3D Printing

As an eco-friendly alternative to non-compostable capsules made of plastic, GEA is one of the zero waste projects at Flo. Zero waste means that all parts of a capsule, including the coffee, can be recovered for industrial composting and no part has to go to waste.

Flo has extended this dedication to zero waste to their industrial production partnering with the advanced additive manufacturing company, Caracol Design Studio, to make use of Ingeo-based trim scrap left over from the production of GEA capsules. The result is a 3D printed exhibition stand and the built-in “3D Bar” that was first displayed during Salone del Mobile in Milan.

“The idea,” says Simonazzi, “is to preserve the high value of the original material by recycling all the capsule materials into a display that we can continue to repurpose in future exhibitions. And when we are ready for a new design, we will recycle the stand by grinding it down to print into a new item.”

The 3D Bar is printed directly from plastic flakes with Caracol’s custom anthropomorphic robotic system and demonstrates how post-industrial waste materials can be recycled into elegant, new applications.

The stand and 3D Bar will also be on display in Flo’s booth (Pav 22 Stand D27) at HostMilano.

About NatureWorks

NatureWorks is an advanced materials company offering a broad portfolio of renewably sourced polymers and chemicals. With performance and economics that compete with oil-based materials, naturally advanced Ingeo™ biomaterials are valued for their unique functional properties and used in products from coffee capsules and appliances to tea bags and 3D printing filament. NatureWorks is jointly owned by Thailand’s largest ASEAN leading integrated petrochemical and refining company, PTT Global Chemical, and Cargill, which provides food, agriculture, financial and industrial products and services to the world.; follow NatureWorks on Twitter @natureworks

About Flo S.p.A.

Flo is a historic brand in the production of food packaging and cups for automatic distribution. The company, based in Fontanellato (Parma – Italy), was founded in 1973 by Antonio Simonazzi. While maintaining a strong link with the territory it belongs to, Flo is today one of the major European players in the sector.

Over the years it has invested beyond the Alps by transferring the typically Italian quality culture to the production and commercial sites it has developed in Europe. The head office has 270 employees, with an additional 80 at its Ruiz production plant in France, the strategic heart of the Flo market in North and Central Europe. In partnership with an Italian player in the sector, Flo is the owner of Nupik, Isap packaging, Benders UK and I & D, important companies in the sector that allow to complete the product range and expand the coverage of the international market. Today, more than forty years after its birth, Flo is a well-recognized, and respected multinational company in the retail, vending, hotel, restaurant, and café sectors. Despite being a family-owned business, Flo has achieved considerable growth via their dedication to developing innovative, efficient and sustainable solutions.


Americas & Europe
Steve Sterling

Tel: +1 952-935-0078


Flo S.p.A.
Veronica Boldrin

Tel: + 39 333 23 21 222

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