El Carmen Packaging Solutions launches Voltea, the paper bag that combats urban pollution


El Carmen Packaging Solutions has presented Voltea, a decontaminating paper bag that combats urban pollution, neutralizing harmful gases only with its exposure to light, even indoors. The new paper bag avoids the photocatalytic phenomenon that is triggered on the surface of the bag when it comes into contact with natural light.

Voltea neutralizes harmful gases only with its exposure to light, even indoors, avoiding the photocatalytic phenomenon that is triggered on the surface of the bag when it comes into contact with natural light.

Voltea neutralizes harmful gases only with its exposure to light, even indoors, avoiding the photocatalytic phenomenon

that is triggered on the surface of the bag when it comes into contact with natural light.

According to Rafael Troncoso, industrial director of El Carmen Packaging Solutions, “Voltea manages to turn around the problem of environmental pollution. The varnish we apply to the paper is eco-active and reacts with natural light even indoors, the more the bags are reused and displayed, the more we will help purify the air we breathe.”

The packaging industry, as well as the commerce sector, are immersed in a major transformation towards a more sustainable consumption model. In this context, the Navarrese company began an R&D&I project in 2019 with the aim of making one of its best-selling items, the recycled paper bag, even more sustainable. “We constantly work on improvements in processes, infrastructure and materials that allow us to reduce the consumption of materials and energy, reuse the greatest possible amount of waste, and generate products that use the maximum possible recycled material. But this time we wanted to go further” -continues Troncoso- “With the aim of improving the maligned image of flexible packaging, we have designed a paper bag that, in addition to being respectful, decontaminates the environment.”

The Voltea bag has the AIF seal (Iberian Association of Photocatalysis), which determines its decontaminating action and guarantees that the tests carried out have been reviewed by its scientific-technical committee. This bag is already a protected trademark (OEPM – nºU2020313147 / MUE18228279 / UK00918228279).

In the development of Voltea, we have had the collaboration of NAITEC (Automotive and Mechatronics Technology Center of Navarra) and the financial aid of the Government of Navarra for the development of an innovative varnish. “Aspects such as its composition, application method and concentration level were key to passing the different tests that would confirm its effectiveness, eliminating nitrogen oxides (NOx),” explains the industrial director of El Carmen Packaging Solutions.

For a material to be considered decontaminating based on ISO 22197-1, a 50 cm2 sample must decontaminate at least 0.5 μmol of NOx during five hours of testing. In the case of the Voltea bag, its decontaminating effect is 13.5% more than what the standard requires. Taking into account that the maximum gas emission of a passenger car is less than 1.74 millimole NOx/km. A Voltea bag exposed to natural light for 1 week (12 hours of light/day) will decontaminate the equivalent of NOx emissions from a car during 1 km of driving.

“Bringing photocatalysis to the packaging industry allows us to take the paper bag to new markets, as well as create new synergies between our partners. Its use can cover new areas, such as transportation, buildings, energy or health. This innovation also allows photocatalysis to be brought closer to society. The air quality would improve a lot if each citizen carried a decontaminating paper bag,” explains Rafael Troncoso.

A particularly interesting bag for food, fashion and small businesses

Voltea is an example of sustainability, in addition to being nationally manufactured and with recycled paper, it is very resistant, which facilitates its use on multiple occasions, prolonging its useful life and its function of improving air quality.

The decontamination paper bag is available in various formats and allows for high printing quality, even on its curled paper handle. For companies, the high level of reuse of Voltea bags makes them an unbeatable advertising medium for their brand, as well as a clear example of their corporate values ​​and environmental commitment. “We are convinced that both small businesses and large fashion companies and supermarket chains are going to bet on Voltea. Together, with the citizens, we will ensure that thousands of eco-active bags work daily for many hours purifying the air,” says Manuel Santos, commercial and marketing director of El Carmen Packaging Solutions.

Voltea and its “Circular Commitment”

The Voltea project is part of the company’s “Circular Commitment”, which covers all its production processes, its products, management and governance, innovation and constant improvement. An effort in all its practices that seeks to improve the sustainability of the company in the areas of the UN Sustainable Development Goals that are most closely related to its activity.

Carmen Packaging Solutions has been working since 1942 to offer packaging solutions, maintaining a clear commitment to innovation, sustainability and closeness with customers and suppliers, leading the great changes in the packaging sector. The Navarrese company has three production plants, seven logistics warehouses, more than two hundred employees, a customer volume of more than 5,000 companies and institutions from various sectors in more than 25 countries, and an annual production of more than 14,000 tons of product.

Carmen Packaging Solutions has the certifications: ISO 9001 2015 and ISO 14001 2015, which confirms that its commitment and compliance with legal, environmental and quality regulations is guaranteed.