Bruk is a sustainable alternative to plastic-lined paper packaging built to separate the plastic lining from its paper covering like peeling a banana.
While paper cartons look environmentally friendly, recycling them can get complicated. Typically, these paper cartons are made by sandwiching two layers of plastic inside a paper covering. It is true that paper cartons use less plastic than packaging made entirely from PET plastics, but the layered construction of paper cartons complicates the recycling process.
Designer: Pushan Panda
Before the recycling process begins, the plastic and paper must be separated, which requires a special process that’s expensive and not readily available worldwide. In an effort to streamline the separation period, California-based designer Pushan Panda created Bruk, a sustainable packaging concept that makes separating the plastic from the paper as easy as peeling a banana.
As a result of the complicated recycling process behind plastic-lined paper packaging, only 49% of beverage cartons are recycled in the UK, while only 16% are recycled in the USA. Pushan Panda designed Bruk to look unassuming and familiar so that consumers will recognize the shape and overall look of the beverage container. What sets Bruk apart from other beverage containers is what’s going on inside.
When users are finished with their beverage cartons, they can simply tear Bruk in half from its top, just like peeling a banana. Once the paper covering has been torn in half, the HDPE liner is revealed and can be recycled on its own. Pushan Panda notes, “We designed Bruk to be intuitive and inclusive, easy for everyone regardless of physical ability. Bruk is as convenient and easy to use as a conventional carton, but uses less plastic than a plastic carton and is 100% recyclable with conventional equipment, unlike paper cartons.