Placon Corporation has launched a container made from 100% recycled polyethylene terephthalate (PETE) in response to customer demand for eco-conscious packaging.
The deli containers were unveiled this month and are available throughout the US and Mexico.
The US-based firm said they can be used for cold, ready-to-eat deli foods such as potato and pasta salads and fruits, nuts and candy.
The Evolutions product line is made from 100% recycled PETE and material will be collected from curbside bottles.
Designs including a recessed, or inside fit lid which allows for container stacking as well as a film sealed container with an over cap lid allowing extra room for the product, said the firm.
Melissa Jacobson, marketing and communications manager at Placon, told FoodProductionDaily.com the firm purchase bales of post-consumer PETE bottles and mixed bales of post-consumer thermoform packaging for their EcoStar sorting facility.
“The bottles and packaging are then ground, washed and processed into flake which can be sold to others or used in our own plastic rollstock extrusion lines.”
Jacobson explained that letter of non-object (LNO) flake allows for up to 100% post-consumer recycled content in food packaging with virgin material clarity and strength.
“After the plastic is extruded, we thermoform it into new, food grade deli containers.
“With Placon’s closed loop, vertically integrated process, there is an overall lower carbon footprint from using recycled materials and sourcing bottles locally.”
Jacobson added another driving factor is the trend for tamper-evident packaging as consumers want to have assurances that the product has not been previously opened and tampered with.
To open a container, a tab at the corner of the lid must be bent upward, once the tab is in the open position it remains upright, alerting customers the container’s seal has been opened.
The tamper-evident lid fits all five square deli container sizes ranging from eight to 32 oz.
She said: “From Walmart’s packaging scorecard that pushes recycled content and greener packaging, to consumers realizing the impact that packaging plays on the environment, the call for environmentally responsible products no longer is a trend, it’s a requirement.”
When asked why using rPET was so important to the company, Jacobson said: “We are reusing already existing plastic for our packaging and keeping waste out of landfills.
“Annually our recycling facility recycles over a billion bottles and converts them back into plastic sheet and packages.
“This reuse of existing resources is equivalent to saving approximately 75,000 barrels of oil.
“There is definitely a call from both our direct customers as well as consumers for eco-conscious packaging.”