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Ecofriendly Food Packaging Ideas For Your Business

food packaging baking mix

Custom Food Packaging

Food businesses have seen a surge in takeaway orders packed in food grade packaging during the pandemic as many authorities paused or limited in-store dining. Even as restaurant operations gradually return to normal, there is still a strong market for takeaways that have made it necessary for many businesses to carefully invest in food packaging. Going eco-friendly is a good choice in the food industry as it helps protect the environment and, in some ways, can save costs. Here are some good options to consider.

Paperboard

Paperboard makes for excellent food grade packaging as it is non-toxic, can easily be customized, and is highly durable. Even where inks are used for writing and coloring, you can safely use options like soy-based inks that are safe and biodegradable. Having a safe way to decorate and impart information on the packaging is important not just for brand building, but also so customers know more about the foods they are about to consume. Their lightweight and biodegradable qualities make them best suited as disposable food containers.

Besides reinforcement that helps ensure the contents of such packaging remain safe from pests, they can also help regulate temperatures and prevent penetration of moisture and oxygen that can cause the food to deteriorate. With certain designs, the shelf-life of foodstuffs stored within can be preserved and prevent contamination that could lead to mold and other spoilage.

Glass

Glass is a good food packaging option for liquids. They are eco-friendly because they can be easily recycled, reused, and are highly durable when properly cared for. However, they are also heavy and easily breakable. Hence, if they are to be used, extra care should be taken and the use of designs that make them easier to carry around. Besides bottles, you can also get glass containers with snap-locking plastic lids that can be used for more solid food storage and transport.

Bamboo

Bamboo is a good choice for packaging food as it is biodegradable and durable. Bamboo material can be used to make lunch boxes, serving bowls, and for drinks straws. Being organic, they cannot be as durable as glass but can be reused severally before the need to dispose of them. They can also be paired with other materials, like as lids to stainless steel lunch boxes.

Stainless steel

This is another good option for reusable food containers. They are highly durable, heat resistant, and do not rust. They are however heavy and more expensive, making them less ideal for takeaway business, but good as food storage containers in the home or a commercial kitchen.

Food Packaging Mistakes to Avoid

Food Packaging

Whether your business provides dry or wet food, there is a strong need to be careful about what kind of packaging your products are stored in. Food packaging is a health and safety issue that can make or break a brand. Here are some of the common packaging mistakes that should be avoided.  

Inks 

Whether it is on the label or the packaging itself, it is vital to ensure that you use food-grade inks. Many businesses are however careless about this and end up contaminating foods through transfer. The chemicals in some inks can be toxic while others can result in allergic reactions. Consult with your packaging supplier to ensure the inks used can safely interact with food or come with coating or other barriers that prevent any contamination.  

Wrong Labeling 

Some brands will make mistakes when it comes to the information printed on their labels. It is important to be careful with the details provided so that consumers are well-informed and able to make appropriate food choices. Be sure to meet industry standards when it comes to such issues as listing ingredients, quantity, and other details. Failure to meet industry standards may result in product recalls that can prove costly to remedy. Also, ensure accuracy and no spelling mistakes have been made. Some ingredients may have similar names and a small mistake can lead to issues like allergic reactions due to wrong information. Food items should also be properly named on their labels as different ingredients and processes can change how they are identified.  

Packaging Materials 

Some food packaging products are made with unsuitable chemicals like styrene, phenol, phthalates, and parabens. When these chemicals come in contact with food they can prove risky to human health. Some have been found to have negative effects like increasing the risk of cancer and endometriosis and harming fertility. It is advisable to work with a packaging supplier that adheres to FDA standards by using food-safe materials, inks, and coatings that do not allow for contamination of food items.  

Food Handling 

Businesses that deal in food products need to ensure appropriate precautions are taken when it comes to food handling. It is not just food packaging that can cause a problem. Contamination can also result when there is contact with unsanitary hands and surfaces when handling the food and its packaging. food businesses must adhere to stringent and hygienic food handling practices that will eliminate the risk of contamination. 

Design Tips For Food Packaging

Food PackagingThe food industry is highly competitive making it more vital to stand out from the crowd. Here are some design tips to help distinguish your brand from the competition and hopefully drive more sales.

Branding

Food packaging is a great opportunity to connect with customers and promote your brand. Remember that you need to keep the promotion consistent with your brand. If you want to seem reliable then use packaging that is staid and functional. If you wish to impart a youthful edgy impression, play with colors and imagery to appeal to a younger audience.

Choose The Right Packaging

Choose food grade packaging that meets industry standards and customer expectations. Check what competitors in the same sector are using and customize to fit your desired image. For instance, if businesses are moving away from plastics, get on board by seeking out environmentally friendly alternatives. Also, keep in mind packaging that can help keep the food as fresh and protected as is reasonably possible.

Display Information

Choose a design that most effectively and attractively conveys information that the consumer would want. For instance, for food products that are to be shelved, consumers will likely want to know the ingredients, how to prepare them, and if the food packaging is recyclable. While an insert can help convey this information, keep in mind most consumers want to get a glimpse of it while in the shopping aisle to make a faster purchasing decision.

Compare and Contrast

As said, you need to consider what your competition is doing. This is not just in terms of the type of packaging, but also the design. You want your product to stand out while on the shelf. Think of what factors consumers use when making a purchasing decision and how you can influence them to pick your product over others.

Keep It Functional

Even as you try to create unique designs that will make your product stand out, you also need to ensure practicality. Not only should the packaging be able to withstand shipping and handling, but it should also meet whatever customer needs if they want to prolong the use of the packaging. Resealable bags or boxes are a big help to consumers who may not want to transfer entire contents to separate storage containers.

Provide A Window

Many consumers appreciate being able to see the contents of the product they are buying within. This can sometimes be effectively communicated through imagery on the box, but is better done by a transparent window to the interior. It gives better verification that the product is what they want and entices them even more to make the purchase.

How Paper Food Packaging Has Boosted Food Safety

Food Packaging
Despite all the challenges we face today in terms of contagious diseases and water shortages, food safety is at an all-time peak thanks in part to the innovative and safety-conscious designs of current food packaging.

Clean Transport

Manufacturers of the corrugated cardboard boxes used to ship fresh produce and packaged foods ensure a sterile manufacturing environment. The paper materials themselves usually go through a sterilization process that ensures no contamination of products that are later packaged within. This means that the boxes are delivered in a safe condition that should prove safe for storing foodstuffs. Contamination not only increases the risk of illness for consumers but can also compromise the shelf life of the food products.

Safe Transport

Corrugated cardboard boxes are also thick enough to ensure minimal effect on packaged foods within. This reduces the risk of bruising to the produce, and that what gets to consumers is in the best condition possible. Damaged food products can prove a financial loss to manufacturers or other suppliers. The resulting food waste can be detrimental when consumers shy away from choosing that stock.

Sealing

Some of the boxes used for packaging food come with self-closing designs that are often bolstered by the use of adhesives. They provide an easy means to check on tampering of products. Consumers will typically avoid food packaging products that seem to have already been opened. This has helped reduce incidents of contaminated food getting to people’s plates.

Food Preservation

Boxes are often the first line of defense from external factors that could lead to damage. Dry food often needs sealed plastic packaging that offers additional safety from moisture, pests, air, and bacteria. This helps to extend the shelf life, flavor, and appearance of the food for longer. The controlled environment also aids in preventing contamination that can harm consumers.

Safer Food Packaging

While plastics do play a role in helping to better preserve foods, they do also come with certain health risks. Especially from the phthalate content. Packaging materials made from paper tend to be safer to use, especially where heat is applied, like in the microwave. Or, when there is some risk of chemicals leaching into the food. Even government bodies do recommend food grade paper packaging as a safer option to reduce exposure to chemicals.

Information Sharing

Food packaging will often include printed material. This is often a combination of branding and information sharing. Details such as health advisories and ingredients are important for food safety. They can help those with food allergies, other health conditions, or dietary requirements make better food choices.

Why Invest In Biodegradable Food Packaging

Food Packaging
When we think of food packaging, the biggest concern is that of hygiene. We want to ensure that whatever touches what we consume is safe and sanitary. This is a valid concern, but should not be the only consideration.

In recent times, consumers have also become concerned about the environment. Many food containers and utensils often find their way into landfills, public parks, and even the ocean. Besides being an eyesore, they are also often consumed by wildlife with deadly consequences.

Luckily, biodegradable options have begun to gain traction. Here is why food businesses should consider them as their top pick.

Safety

Biodegradable food packaging products are very safe to use. Unlike some plastic containers that have been found to contain cancer-causing properties, these containers are made to food-grade standards. They are harmless to human and animal health. Made with natural wood and paper materials, business owners can rest assured they will not cause any harm even if disposed of carefully.

Decomposition

Natural plant materials that can easily degrade are good for the environment. Even if carelessly disposed of in the natural surroundings, they will quickly and harmlessly breakdown. They will not accumulate and become problematic additions to landfills.

Energy Savings

The production processes used to make biodegradable boxes and other containers require much less energy than their petroleum-based counterparts. Lower energy consumption for this work is another reduction in the reliance on natural resources. And because some of the materials used in making new containers are recycled, this further reduces production costs and time.

Brand Boosting

Companies that use biodegradable food packaging can mark their containers as such. When consumers see these markings, they know the manufacturer of the product is environmentally conscious. It can help boost the image of the brand and encourage increased patronage from customers.

Because the packaging easily degrades, it also means people in the community are less likely to see incidents of the particular product packaging littered around. The packaging will quickly breakdown, leaving little evidence it was ever there.

Customization

Branding of products is made easy when you can tailor the packaging. Thankfully, even biodegradable packaging can be customized in a variety of ways, from sizing to graphic designs. Even the shape of the containers to the materials used for padding can be made from plant-based materials of varied designs. This makes it easy to offer an attractive product to the market that you know is safe for the environment.

Types of Food Grade Packaging to Know

Food Grade Packaging

Food grade packaging is a particular type of container made to protect your food without transferring toxic substances. These safe packaging also comes in many forms, sometimes containing nutrition facts and various other information about the food inside.

Food safety containers are commonly being used in groceries, the food manufacturing industry, fast food, and restaurants to protect their contents from moisture and oxygen. These two elements are more commonly associated with microorganism growth and spoiling your grub. Food packaging is essential packaging, especially for wet-pack foods, including meat, fruits, and vegetables and other items that quickly spoil.

Why Food Packaging is Important

One of the primary functions of a food packing material is to preserve the natural quality of your food. Containers used for home food preservation ensures freshness and seals the sound condition of your items. Aside from protecting its content, food grade packaging also helps withstand pressure from various other cargo during shipment.

It prevents damage incurred during product handling or shipment and creates a stable condition prolonging the shelf life of your perishable items. Aside from keeping your food safe, food containers can also be customized to reflect your brand and message. Using the outside of the box can be a good strategy of advertising your product without incurring too much overhead on your marketing initiatives.

Basic Types of Food Grade Packaging

Three basic types of paper food packaging are used in most industries. Aside from being sturdy, they are also biodegradable and does not contain harmful chemicals. Unlike plastic and metal, which contaminates food, paper materials are not as hazardous as other alternatives.

Corrugated boxes. This type of food container is ideally used for various goods, including fruits and vegetables, wine, and similar products that require careful handling. Corrugated boxes are heavy duty and provide the needed strength to keep everything in good condition.

Paper bags and multi-wall sacks. Paper bags are more commonly used in groceries and retail stores to protect items from getting damaged. Multi-wall sacks, on the other hand, are used to contain flour and various other dry and powdery ingredients.

Paperboard cartons. Paperboard cartons are used to contain single items like crackers, chips, cereals, and many other similar products. They come in many different shapes and sizes which can be customized to fit your brand identity.

Food packaging is an essential need if you want to maintain the freshness of your items. Not only does it protect perishable goods, but it also ensures you get the needed value for your business investments.