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Innovative meat packaging top winner of prestigious DuPont Awards

Innovative vacuum-packaging that reduces food waste by keeping meat looking and staying fresh longer took top honours in the 2012 DuPont Awards for Packaging Innovation.

Diamond Winner: Excellence in Innovation, Cost/Waste Reduction and Sustainability

FreshCase packaging, an innovation by Curwood – A Bemis Division in the US

This is the first-ever, vacuum package for red meat that maintains the meat’s appetising colour through a “found-in-nature” proprietary additive in the contact layer of the barrier package.

Traditional vacuum-packaged meat is “purple”, deemed distasteful by many consumers who equate colour with freshness. FreshCase packaging also extends shelf life 10 times longer than store-wrapped meat. The combination of longer shelf life and more appetising appearance promises to both reduce food waste and increase the availability of proteins in areas further away from food sources.

As an alternative for modified atmosphere (MAP) master packs and packages using EPS/PVC resin technology that dominate the case-ready meat segment, FreshCase enables 75% less markdowns/waste than store-wrapped meats, less landfill waste and reduces packaging materials up to 75%, compared to other case-ready formats, thereby improving sustainability.

The 2012 diamond winner exemplifies the role packaging plays in helping to feed a growing population around the world.

“FreshCase packaging technology for meat, selected by the Jurors as this year’s diamond winner, addresses the important effort to help ensure food maintains its nutritional value and freshness,” said William Harvey, president of DuPont Packaging & Industrial Polymers. “In the face of a growing population with limited resources, food waste from spoilage must be greatly reduced, and innovative packaging solutions will play a critical role in that story.”

An expert panel evaluated 200 entries from 21 countries and awarded one diamond winner, five gold winners and 10 silver winners based on “excellence” in one, two or all three categories: Innovation, Sustainability and Cost/Waste Reduction.

Gold Winner: Innovation and Waste Reduction

Du Pont winner - BreadPepperidge Farm Deli Flats thin rolls and Goldfish Sandwich Bread (Flats) packaging by Pepperidge Farm; CP Flexible Packaging; Printpackp; Sealstrip Corporation – US

With their new package design, these products bring life to the bakery aisle and radically change how bread is displayed.

This new package features a horizontal flow wrap package made of a film lamination that provides excellent seal strength, tear resistance, increased barrier for longer shelf life and, with a reverse printing process, outstanding shelf appeal. Traditional closures are replaced with a pressure-sensitive Sealstrip closure that provides excellent resealability, ensuring that the product stays fresh. Removal of the tray component enables 65% less material to be used. 25% more packages can be shipped in the same amount of space as the original package, resulting in reduced transportation costs.

This is an outstanding example of how innovation can be simple and affordable for consumers, while making a splash on store shelves.

Silver winner: Innovation

Du Pont winnerUltra-Freshness preservation freezing system using high “electric potential” and electro-conductive packaging by Mutsumi Chemical Industry Co; SUN Electric Co; Enshu-Kasei Co – Japan

The Ultra-Freshness Preservation Freezing System uses technology proven in the electronics industry to ensure food quality and increase both shelf life and appeal.

This rapid-freezing system uses both alternating and direct current, high “electric potential”, at the same time to rapidly cool the product without oxidization, reducing the size of ice crystals that form in food cells. This process relies on a unique package design that includes an electro-conductive bag made of L-LDPE and DuPont Entira AS. The combination of rapid freezing and the innovative electro-conductive bag preserves food taste and texture, reducing the amount of edible food thrown away.

Silver winner: Innovation

Du Pont Winner - KraftKraft YES pack by Kraft Foods; Exopack; Foth Production Solutions; PE International; The Food Group; Smart Bottle – USA

The Kraft YES Pack, which stands for Yield, Ease and Sustainability, is an innovative and environmentally friendly flexible gallon dressing package.

Yes Pack is designed to help foodservice operators manage costs and improve back-of-house efficiencies with improved dressing yield of up to 99 percent (compared to rigid gallon jug). The dual handled design allows for easy carrying and the smaller spout provides precision pouring.

Also, when compared to the production of the rigid gallon jug, the YES Pack is made with: 50 percent less energy, 60 percent less plastic, and 70 percent fewer CO2 emissions from transportation.

Source: Du Pont: Click here to read about all the winners

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