Polymer-coated cans for Europe

Drinks cans made from polymer-coated steel – a technique that reduces the environmental impact of their manufacturing plants – came a step closer to commercial reality recently. Arcelor Packaging International, a division of Europe’s leading steelmaker, signed a deal with Japan’s Toyo Kohan, one of the largest manufacturers of coated canstock, to use its technology. Arcelor has also tied up with Japan’s top canmaker Toyo Seikan, which is developing ‘dry’ canmaking systems for coated steel cans from similar techniques used for aluminium cans in Japan. The techniques enable plants to operate without chemical cleaning and thermally-cured coating systems. Rival European steelmaker Corus is also well advanced in the development of its Protact steel for use with beverage cans.