Palsgaard – a world leading producer of food ingredients had been on the radar of Norner for some time.
Why? Because their emulsifiers products could have interesting potentials within the polymer industry.
Back in 2009 Palsgaard and Norner met for the first time at the Palsgaard estate in Juelsminde, Denmark. A strong team from Palsgaard covering sales and marketing, R&D, business and product management met with Norner experts in additives and polyolefin industry.
Food packaging with 100% vegetable based product
During this first meeting, Norner introduced the idea to diversify Palsgaard business into a new market segment – the polyolefin Industry.
Palsgaard was established in 1908 by Einar Viggo Schou who had a special vision for his business. Einar laid down a set of corporate and social values for Palsgaard which the company has continued to follow ever since. Owned by a foundation, Palsgaard has the freedom to think long term without the everyday pressure from shareholders.
Their sustainable product philosophy and knowledge in the food industry was a good platform to enter the additives to food packaging with 100% vegetable based products. Combined with Norner’s advanced laboratories and expert knowledge in the polyolefin (PO) industry and its requirements, the opportunity was up for grab.
Through several workshops, Palsgaard and Norner analysed and worked out;
The PO market and technologies
Emulsifier based additives, their applications in plastics and the requirements
This work was followed by projects were Palsgaard’s existing products were analysed and tested against benchmark from market leaders to enable Palsgaard management making a qualified decision whether to expand their business into the polyolefin (PO) industry.
Figure: Comparative study of antistatic performance. The antistatic effect is measured as static decay time.
Anti-fogging agents in PE and antistatic agents in PP
The test results confirmed that Palsgaard’s emulsifiers excellent performance as anti-fogging agents in PE and antistatic agents in PP with properties even exceeding the benchmark.
“Palsgaard decided to go for the leap into a new market for their products.”
Palsgaard decided to take the next steps and started the development of new tailor-made products for specific PE and PP applications supported by Norner application testing and feedback.
Picture: Paalsgaard additives can be used as antifogging additives. Courtesy of Paalsgard.
Training program at Norner
To prepare their organisation for the new business, Palsgaard sent 25 key employees to Norner for a 1-week tailor-made training program. The training covered all aspects of plastics and the PO industry, market requirements, testing and characterisation, PO procurement strategies and even included role-plays, making Palsgaard ready to interact with the PO industry in a professional way.
Palsgaard, who since long have had a sophisticated R&D branch (Nexus) supporting their activities in the food sector, gradually developed their own capabilities in product characterisation and application testing for the non-food area.
In 2017 they invested in their own dedicated development centre for functional agents to polymer application, hiring a highly skilled staff headed by Bjarne Nielsen, a well know capacity from the additive business.
New product range
In 2016 Palsgaard launched their new product range for PO applications under the brand name Einar® - honouring their founder Einar Viggo Schou and closing the circle.
Sustainability is vital for the “Heart working people” at Palsgaard, and they have established a blog called “Emulsifiers for Good.”
The purpose of "Emulsifiers for Good" is to educate on the use of emulsifiers in food and in non-food applications and to advocate that these emulsifiers be produced in a sustainable manner, to help achieve the UN’s 17 Sustainable Development Goals.
Posts on the blog are written not just by Palsgaard staff but also by other experts within the food and non-food industries or by sustainability focused NGOs. If you are an expert in the use of emulsifiers in polymers, we are sure Palsgaard would like to invite you to contribute to the blog as well.
We would like to thank Palsgaard for an excellent and exiting cooperation and wish them all the best in the PO industry.