Product sustainability at tesa
As a company, tesa is well-known for expertise in adhesives and adhesive tape design. We will now increasingly apply this expertise to develop products that are more sustainable than ever.
In terms of product sustainability, tesa has adopted a holistic and scientific approach.
On the one hand, we develop and produce adhesive solutions that are more environmentally friendly due to the use of bio-based or recycled raw materials in the ingredients, solvent-free production or their ability to be recycled. The responsible sourcing of raw materials has played an increasingly major role over recent years.
On the other hand, we help our customers increase the sustainability of their own products and processes with our innovative product uses. Adhesives are more important than ever. Bonded materials can be separated again if the adhesive is designed accordingly. Products that are broken can be fixed with adhesives instead of being discarded. Adhesive bonds have the power to replace screw-fastened or welded joints and make cars lighter, for example, which reduces the amount of energy required for propulsion.
There are many aspects to the sustainability of an adhesive tape. That is why tesa will be increasing its focus on the entire product lifecycle moving forward. This means that adhesive tapes are developed in a way that accounts for the impact on the environment and society at every point. This involves looking at the procurement of the raw materials, the production stage, the product’s useful life and the end of the product lifecycle.
The packaging tapes launched by tesa in 2021 are a great example of this. The tesapack® Bio & Strong packaging tape, for instance, is made of up to 98% bio-based material. tesapack® Paper Standard is a paper packaging tape that makes recycling easy.
It is not always possible to improve all aspects of product sustainability at once. The variety of materials found in our adhesive tapes, which guarantee the high quality and performance of our products, cannot always be replaced with alternatives immediately. We need to keep developing new concepts and processes at our laboratories over time.
tesa already uses bio-based materials such as natural rubber. Other examples include natural resins which can be added either pure or modified to adhesives made from rubbers, acrylate or other polymers. Polylactic acid has also used been as a base for the first time starting in 2021 and can be found in the innovative tesapack® Bio & Strong packaging tape. Plant-based cornstarch from carefully selected sources, which is also a naturally renewable material, provides the basic raw material in this tape. We also use responsibly sourced paper for backings and or liners. The material for the new paper-based tesapack® Paper Standard adhesive tape (certified) is made with paper from sustainable sources. New products will be released each year to follow these innovations for industry and our end customers. The recycled films and plastics in our tesa® EcoLogo products have become a firm fixture for the tesa brand. After all, this eco-friendly product range for consumers has been around for ten years now.
All new products are developed on the basis of scientific research and undergo extensive critical testing. This ensures our products don’t only perform perfectly and – in the truest sense of the word – “do what it says on the label”, it also subjects them to various external and independent certification mechanisms. The high organic content of tesapack® Bio & Strong was awarded by DIN CERTCO and TÜV Austria. tesapack® Paper Standard, which also launched in 2021, is a tape with paper from sustainable sources and has been certified according to INGEDE 12 (International Association of the Deinking Industry) as disposable with waste paper.
tesa has made contributions to improving sustainability over many years, particularly in the field of e-mobility and smart communications. As a specialist in the development of multi-functional tapes, tesa is ready to help its partners in the automotive industry take the next steps towards e-mobility. Hundreds of high-precision products are already successfully in use, with many more currently in development. The key areas of application include, for instance, weight-saving adhesion of cells in batteries and insulating electrical components through wire harnessing.
Most notably, the patented tesa® Bond & Detach ensures that smartphones last longer because the battery can be replaced. In line with our commitment to sustainability, this technology helps avoid electronic waste – and keeps consumers from having to buy new products frequently.