Life Cycle Assessment of fresh dairy packaging at ELOPAK
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Nearly all food and drink products require some packaging, and the impact from productionand consumption is causing a strain on the environment. To counteract the badeffects, business is emphasizing the environmental performance of products and thereforeutilising Life Cycle Assessment as a tool to quantify the environmental impacts from aproducts life cycle. Elopak, which is an International supplier of paper-based packagingfor liquid food, is a such company. This thesis is a Life Cycle Assessment focusing on anElopak 1-liter beverage carton for fresh milk.The main goal of this study is to quantify the environmental impact in a cradle-to-graveperspective. Also, to point out which life cycle phases that contribute most to impactsand to suggest strategies improving the system environmental performance. The productsystem is assessed in a European context and the reference time of primary data is setto the year 2015. Materials in the beverage carton consist mainly of liquid packagingboard (LPB), and polyethylene (PE) for coating and closure. Important phases whichare excluded from this study is retail and consumer activities.Results from this study show an impact of 45 g CO2 -eq for climate change, 57,7 mgP O34− -eq for eutrophication, 79,1 mg NMVOC for photochemical oxidant formation and154,6 mg SO2 -eq for terrestrial acidification. The most contributing life cycle phasesprove to be the production of raw materials in primary packaging where the impacts aredominated by the production of LPB and PE resins. Important strategies for improvingthe environmental performance of the product system is to ensure that raw materials havea low impact. This can be done by choosing environmentally friendly materials such asrenewable plastics, reducing its weight and by improving production processes. Additionally,recycling should be encouraged to substitute the production of virgin materials.