IML-T® Cardboard

IML-T® Designed with recycling in mind

Brilliant cardboard decoration with IML-T® Cardboard made by ILLIG

ILLIG Maschinenbau is leading the way once again by unveiling its innovative IML-T® Cardboard, a plastic-cardboard combination packaging, designed with recycling in mind. ILLIG engineers preserved what was good, fine-tuned the existing technology and added new improvements. This innovative application can be produced on ILLIG IML-T® machines. The advantage of the newly designed packaging, developed specifically for the new circular-economy market demands, is the reduction of plastic and simplified sorting for simplified recycling.

The IML-T® Cardboard application can be produced on existing ILLIG thermoforming systems with an IML unit. That means packaging specialists that already own an ILLIG IML-T® machine line can produce the new packaging without having to first invest in a new machine. All that is needed is a tool set with the required packaging design. The IML unit, which is connected to the thermoforming machine, extracts the cardboard labels with the pre-printed decoration on them from the magazine and places them into the forming tool's cavities before the forming process begins. The end product is a cup or tray with a fully new design concept.

Another advantage of the IML-T® technology is that it lets you use a different pre-printed label for each cavity, and changing production is also quick and easy. Combined with the high productivity typical of ILLIG thermoforming systems, production of resource-efficient and sustainable packaging is thus possible.

Designed for recycling and sustainability

The leading specialist for thermoforming systems has once again been able to develop a solution to meet the latest market demand for a circular-economy solution in the shortest of time with its IML-T® Cardboard. Within the context of their 360° tailor-made packaging development, Pactivity®, the experts at ILLIG from the packaging lab, R&D and tool and machine engineering departments were able to put their heads together to come up with this resource-efficient application and bring it to market. The key concept driving the development of this innovation was an ecodesign and a package that could easily be recycled. With this development, ILLIG stays true to its identity as an innovation leader in thermoforming.

Good for the environment, the contents and the consumer

The advantage of the IML-T® Cardboard packaging is its very thin-walled plastic interior (less material consumption) with an outer layer of cardboard, which increases the stability of the packaging and thus guarantees a high top-load strength. The pack can be sealed and the cardboard decorated with brilliant marketing labels on fives sides or even six sides with two-sided labeling on the bottom. Once the packaging has served its original purpose, the plastic can be easily separated from the cardboard by either the consumer or the collection center and the materials recycled. It eliminates the greatest hurdles to the circular economy by simplifying the sorting process for easy recycling. This in turn also promotes a positive brand image of the packaged product. In particular regional brands can improve their brand image with this sustainability concept.

The application is an absolute novelty, which will impact the market for decorated thermoformed packaging, especially in the premium products segment. IML-T® Cardboard is ideal for applications such as meat trays (MAP), vegetable trays, ice cream containers and frozen TV dinners, as well as packaging for delicatessen, dairy products, margarine, cream cheese, spreads, jams, jellies, cereals, pet food and non-food products. And even more applications making use of this new packaging solution can be expected in the future to spruce up the product at the POS – to the benefit of the environment, the package contents and the consumer.



ILLIG is a leading global supplier of thermoforming systems and mold systems for thermoplastics. The company's product and services portfolio includes the development, design, manufacture, installation and commissioning of complex production lines and components. With the unique 360° packaging development, Pactivity®, and the high-performance packaging systems, ILLIG supplies its customers with resource-friendly and sustainable solutions, designed for recycling. With branches and sales agencies in over 80 countries, ILLIG is locally present in all markets around the globe. For over 70 years, the family business has been serving its customers across the globe as a reliable partner for the cost-effective manufacturing of complex precision thermoplastic parts with innovative technology of unsurpassed quality and comprehensive worldwide after-sales support.


Further information:
Georg Sposny, Corporate Communications, Press and Public Relations
ILLIG Maschinenbau GmbH & Co. KG, Robert-Bosch-Straße 10, D-74081 Heilbronn
Phone: +49 7131 505-784, Fax: -1784, Mail:,

Note: Terms marked with ® are registered and protected trademarks of ILLIG Maschinenbau GmbH & Co. KG.
Pictures: ILLIG

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