Anxo Vidal, Business Manager at ECOPLAS BARBANZA: “Our intention is to make the definitive international leap, and for this, we have strengthened our sales team and formed an alliance with another manufacturer and several distributors in the markets that we consider to be most strategic.”
We spoke with Anxo Vidal, Business Manager at Ecoplas to find out first-hand the added value of Ecoplas, their goals for 2021 and how they perceive the change in consumer behavior, showing greater environmental awareness towards consumers and packaging.
Permanence in a sector such as food packaging is not easy. After 15 years of work, the steadfastcommitment to innovation, technology and trust in products that are characterized by sustainability are proving them right.
In addition, we cannot forget the importance of maintaining enthusiasm and perseverance in the work that allows us to meet the challenges facing as a company year after year.
1- WHAT IS THE ADDED VALUE OF ECOPLAS?
At Ecoplas, which in 2021 is celebrating our 15th anniversary, and, within a sector as mature as food packaging, we were clear that we had to bet on innovation to be competitive. Since our beginning we have tried to combine innovation with another axis as important to us as sustainability. I think that we have achieved it and proof of this can be found in the different R & D & I projects in which we have participated for the development of compostable raw materials and the manufacture of meshes: ECOBIONET, BIOVEGE, BIALAC, and the VEGEPACK project that we are currently working on. occupies. This bet has differentiated us in the market.
2-WHAT ARE THE GOALS OF ECOPLAS FOR 2021?
Our main project for 2021 is the introduction into the market of a new mesh concept, which we have called SMART NETS.
The concept of mesh packaging has not evolved in the last twenty years and although new packaging formats have appeared, mesh as such has not evolved. Our challenge for this year is very ambitious, and it is about transforming the current mesh concept and relating the product to the main challenges of today’s society:
- Food safety
- Circular Economy
- Technology 4.0
With Smart Nets we intend to cover a series of needs that we believe both end consumers, prescribers (supermarkets) as well as our clients (understood as packers) have, and up to now are not being satisfied.
We know that it is a very ambitious and risky bet but at the same time very necessary in a product such as extruded mesh that during the last fifty years has not evolved at the same rate as other food packaging. But I do not want to give more clues and I invite you all to the presentation of the same that we will carry out in the next quarter.
In addition, our intention is to make the definitive international leap and, for this, we have strengthened our commercial team and we have closed an alliance with another manufacturer and several distributors in the markets that we consider to be most strategic.
3-DO YOU THINK THAT THERE HAS BEEN A CHANGE IN CONSUMER BEHAVIOR AND THERE IS CURRENTLY GREATER ENVIRONMENTAL AWARENESS?
Yes indeed. We believe that there is a change in consumer behavior in reference to plastic packaging. As I mentioned before, sustainability for us is one of the pillars of our company and it has always been that way.
We are very committed to the environment and we have received a number of recognitions in the course of our trajectory these years:
- THE COCA-COLA FOUNDATION award for our BIOMARES initiative
- The recognition of the Xunta de Galicia with the Prize for Innovation in Circular Economy.
- In addition, we have the Green Energy Certificate that certifies that all the electricity we consume comes from renewable sources.
At ECOPLAS at this time we have two product lines and the two lines are closely aligned with the preservation and conservation of the Environment:
R – NET: It is a line of products based on the triple R:
- Recyclable: All the meshes we manufacture are recyclable and are deposited in the yellow container, thus extending the useful life of the raw material.
- Renewables: Raw materials can come from renewable sources such as sugar cane and even obtain the Tuv Austria seal of “Ok Bio-based“
- Reduce: We reduce the use of plastic in manufacturing, achieving lighter meshes with the same performance
ECO-NET: This is our line of compostable products that we have developed in the different R&D projects in which we participate and have participated. This range of products is endorsed with the “Ok Compost” seal of Tuv Austria.
4-TELL US YOUR PERSONAL EXPERIENCE AS A BUSINESS MANAGER-CBO OF ECOPLAS: HOW MANY YEARS HAVE YOU BEEN IN THE COMPANY? WHAT CHANGES HAVE YOU EXPERIENCED IN THE COMPANY IN THE LAST YEARS?
I have been with the company since its inception in 2006 and I have watched it grow and develop. It began as a specific project for the seafood packaging sector in Galicia and with a lot of effort, work and a great team of professionals, we have been able to give it an international and multisectoral scope. If I had to highlight the most important moments in our history so far, I would highlight three:
- Our alliance with the Italian company Team Mare, a manufacturer of machinery for seafood packaging, which gave us international reach and the ambition to grow outside of Galicia. With them we place ourselves in the first line of machinery sales.
- Another important moment was when the current partners of ECOPLAS bet on increasing production capacity and strong investments were made in the company. We managed to considerably increase our machinery park.
- Exponential creation of jobs in the company has paralleled our growth. We like to bet on job creation and try to do our bit in our immediate surroundings.
Throughout this journey we have been fortunate to have a great team of professionals. They are undoubtedly one of the most important assets our company has. In addition to the great support of our CEO José Peleteiro, who leads us, and who is the person pushing us to continue growing, always betting on values such as humanity, without ever making us forget the entrepreneur that we carry inside, and without whom it would have been impossible to get to where we are today.