This breakthrough, which has been achieved through the development of an innovative multi-layer polypropylene pack from RPC Bebo UK Corby, can be seen as a further blow to the metal packaging sector, which has seen a shift away from traditional methods of packaging and a move towards new innovative plastics.
Manufactured by Gelagri Bretagne, the new Conserves Pratiques range of vegetables is said to have an ambient shelf life of up to two years with the added consumer benefit of individually separable compartments that can be easily and quickly reheated in the microwave. Christian Claeys of Les Cles du Developpement has been responsible for the technical management of the project on behalf of Carrefour.
Each pack consists of two or four individual portions in lightweight sealed trays. The transparent pack is designed for ease of filling and maintains its shape during sterilisation. It is sealed with a peelable transparent multilayer film from LPF Flexible Packaging, and its rectangular form makes the pack easy to store (taking up one third of the space required for metal cans of equivalent capacity).
The Conserves Pratiques range includes beans, peas and mixed vegetables. It is being launched across France in Carrefour hypermarkets, Champion supermarkets and local stores under the 'Grand Jury' label.
"Conserves Pratiques represents a real breakthrough in providing a vegetable concept that meets the convenience requirement of today's consumer," said Luc Fevrier, Carrefour preserved products category manager.
"As a result of excellent co-operation with Carrefour and Gelagri Bretagne, RPC Bebo's technological expertise has ensured that the concept reaches the shelves with a high standard of product protection and visual appeal."
Another major new product on show will be the T-Disc brewing device for Kraft Foods' revolutionary TASSIMO beverage system, a breakthrough multi-layer polypropylene pack that RPC claims represents the latest in foodservice jars for high temperature food processing.
RPC Bramlage and Kraft Foods have spent two years developing the T-Disc to ensure its high functionality. Each T-Disc - designed to work exclusively with the TASSIMO brewer - contains a precisely measured amount of product with essential brewing information contained in a barcode on the label. The internal components of the T-Disc guide the flow of water to brew the perfect cup.
The RPC Group is one of Europe's leading manufacturers of rigid plastic packaging, unique in offering products made by all three main conversion processes, blowmoulding, injection moulding and thermoforming. The group has over 30 autonomous sites in 10 countries, employing in excess of 5,600 people.