Mars powers packaging progress with digital transformation

Collaboration with Ansys engineering software builds on the Mars heritage of packaging innovation and will help Mars achieve its ultimate aim of using 100% reusable, recyclable or compostable packaging for its products
Mars powers packaging progress with digital transformation
Photo - Ansys

Mars has announced a new collaboration with engineering software giant Ansys. The multinational manufacturer will adopt simulation software designed to reimagine Mars's packaging innovation process through digital technology.

Mars, the maker of household brand names including M&M’S, ROYAL CANIN and SNICKERS, is set to leverage the new simulation approach to perform virtual testing and prototyping on new packaging innovation, initially across its Snacking portfolio.

The groundbreaking multi-physics simulation technology minimizes the need for extensive physical testing during the packaging development process. It provides in-depth insights into various aspects of the complex production phases, including wrapping, drop tests and failure scenarios.

Together, Mars and Ansys build on the CPG giant’s heritage of innovation that dates back over a century and illustrates the company’s aim and investments to supercharge efforts to achieve its ultimate aim of using 100% reusable, recyclable or compostable packaging for its products.

The implementation of simulation software is set to facilitate a more nimble, digital-first development environment at Mars, spanning from design to manufacturing, making the process easier and more efficient for its team of R&D experts as the company looks to expedite the pace of progress across its packaging ecosystem.

Researchers at Mars have already reported reductions in development time of up to 40% through computer modeling and in the quantity of plastic purchased by Mars for testing by approximately 246 tons.

The food and pet care provider has said that it is working to redesign more than 12,000 packaging types across its portfolio to fit with the recycling infrastructure that either exists today or is likely to exist in the future, making it easier for consumers to recycle their packaging.

"In the world we want tomorrow, no packaging becomes waste,” said Qing Qi, vice president R&D global innovation, Mars Snacking. “This vision is at the heart of our multi-billion dollar Sustainable in a Generation plan and will only become a reality by taking unconstrained strides, leveraging breakthrough science, innovative thinking and partnerships to push the boundaries of what's possible.

“We continue to see the impact and potential of simulation and digital engineering in progressing sustainability initiatives throughout the world,” said Walt Hearn, senior vice president of worldwide sales and customer excellence at Ansys. “Mars has successfully implemented the pervasive insights of Ansys simulation to optimize its design and packaging processes. Mars’ more sustainable approach to development sets a terrific example for other manufacturers to adopt new solutions that move us all toward a cleaner planet.”

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