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O-I jars boost homemade image of baby food line

By Rachel Arthur+

03-Jun-2014
Last updated the 03-Jun-2014 at 11:04 GMT

O-I glass jars boost ‘100% natural’ credentials of baby food line

Glass jars evoke the idea of ‘homemade’ to appeal to parents who want natural nutritious baby food, according to manufacturer Owens-Illinois (O-I). 

The firm makes the jars for Beech-Nut Nutrition Company’s baby food line, which uses ‘100% natural’ fruits and vegetables to create a product that looks and tastes homemade.

Beech-Nut says its line has been influenced by parents who are increasingly making food at home with simple wholesome ingredients.

The 'perfect pair': glass and baby food

Shawn Welch, vice president sales and marketing in North America, O-I, told FoodProductionDaily.com glass is considered a ‘safe’ product as it is inert and does not affect the flavor.

“One of the drivers behind the trend of homemade is parents’ concerns about the health and purity of what their babies are eating," he said. "In that context, Beech-Nut’s 100% natural baby food and O-I glass jars are a perfect pairing.

“Most importantly for baby food, glass is healthy, safe and trust-worthy: it is pure and made from natural, non-toxic materials. Glass is virtually inert and does not contain chemicals that can leach into the food.”

Glass does not absorb food colours or smells, so food keeps its natural taste, smell and appearance, he added.

The Beech-Nut line includes just sugar snap peas; just mango, apple & avocado. It uses a process called gentle cooking to stop the food from being over-processed, and none of the flavours or nutrients get watered down, the company claims.

Honeypot shape differentiates brand

The jars are a tapered honeypot shape, and the labels are clear so the colours and textures of the food can be seen.

“Working with Beech-Nut, O-I’s new product development team found baby food shelves are dominated by short, uniformly round jars, making it hard for brands to differentiate themselves,” Welch said.

“With the taller honeypot shape, our designers created a premium appearance for Beech-Nut that maximizes the visibility of their natural, colorful baby food. The tapered sides angle the label on the jar toward consumers, enhancing the Beech-Nut branding.

“By making the jar wider at the bottom, we gave consumers more room to move the spoon around to reach all of the food. We also removed the sharp shoulder that you find near the top of the typical baby food jar. Without that obstruction, it is easier to remove the spoon and the food from the jar.”

O-I makes glass containers for food and beverage brands, including packaging for beer, wine, spirits and non-alcoholic beverages.