Polyamides and Intermediates

LCA Mozzarella Packaging

Life Cycle Assessment on a mozzarella cheese packaging's entire life cycle

To better understand the environmental impacts of both the packaging format as well as the raw material source within a mozzarella packaging’s entire life cycle, BASF conducted a study with Südpack and Sphera.

BASF’s sustainable mass-balanced polyamides Ultramid® Ccycled®, produced by using chemically recycled feedstock, or Ultramid® BMBcert, produced by using renewable feedstock, were examined in the mix with polyethylene.

The results demonstrate that significantly lower environmental impacts, primarily resulting in a reduction of COemissions, can be achieved by using flexible multi-layer packaging with a large share of chemically recycled or renewable raw materials.

LCA Study

Methodical Approach

LCIA methodology

Environmental Footprint (EF 3.0) assessment method published by the European Commission

Packaging Formats

Südpack Mozzarella cheese flexible multi-layer packaging

Flexible multi-layer packaging

Südpack Mozzarella cheese rigid tray and lid film

Rigid tray + lid film

Raw Materials

Base Case         Chemically recycled* PA6 + conventional** PE

Alternative 1      Chemically recycled* PA6 + chemically recycled* PE

Alternative 2      Biomass-balanced* PA6 + conventional** PE

Alternative 3      Conventional** PA6+ conventional** PE

* via mass balance approach
** conventional = based on fossil raw materials; the pictures are illustrating the packaging format, in fact real supermarket-retailed mozzarella packagings were purchased, examined and used for this study.


The rigid tray packaging system shows the highest potential environmental impacts in all categories


Nearly 3-fold use of raw materials in the production of the rigid tray packaging (2.41 kg/FU for flexible vs. 7.25 kg/FU for rigid packaging)

* Climate change impact category assessed based on the IPCC characterisation factors taken from the 5th Assessment Report for a 100-year timeframe (incl biogenic CO2, incl Land Use Change)


Packaging Format Perspective


  • The conventional packaging (Alternative 3) shows a significantly higher climate change impact vs. packaging containing chemically recycled* PA6 (Base Case)
  • Increasingly lower environmental impacts can be achieved using flexible multi-layer packaging with a high share of chemically recycled* raw materials (Alternative 1)
  • Climate change impact reductions for packaging containing chemically recycled* raw materials are mainly caused by the upstream system expansion

* via mass balance approach
** chemically recycled; conv. = conventional

Raw Material Perspective


Packaging & Extrusion

Paul Neumann
Dr. Paul Neumann
NBD & Sustainability Polyamides Europe
Road through the natural forest.