General / January 22, 2018
It seems like everyone is on the diet bandwagon these days… especially at the start of every new year. But it’s not fad dieting that reigns supreme any more. In fact, healthy lifestyle eating is the new—lifetime sustainable—trend that has health-conscious consumers changing their eating habits with “forever” in mind. It’s no surprise, then, that quick go-to foods that pack, store, and travel well (but still fit the healthy criteria) are what consumers crave. After all, why should junk food be the only fast option? And that’s where flexible packaging lends a hand and makes the experience even better.
Easy-to-grab snack foods are not new on store shelves, but they are certainly getting a makeover—and not just in the “health food” stores, but in many supermarkets. Nuts, dried fruits, and various nutrient-rich clusters are available in portion packs, trendy flavors, and as part of healthy snack mixes with a balance of nutrients (instead of candy-coated chocolate pieces).
As the whole family gets in on the act (or the solo user with great willpower), consumers want both larger packages and the ability to seal it back up to maintain freshness. And for the highly eco-conscious consumer-base, what greater win could you have if you package your snack products in compostable flexible packaging? After the trail mix is gone, what’s sweeter than the packaging contributing to new growth in the landscape?
There are almost endless applications for frozen food in a healthy diet. From adding fruits and vegetables into protein-powder-based smoothies (without watering them down by adding too much ice), to enjoying out-of-season produce, to enjoying quick-cooking meals free of GMOs and unwanted additives, many freezers are stocked fuller than ever.
Eating from the freezer no longer means heating up your grandfather’s TV dinner. But it’s also more than nuking “diet” single-serve entrees. Many of the frozen produce (and even protein) options are packaged in multi-serve portions, for family meals or for one or two diners to create or supplement multiple meals. And all those frozen berries for smoothies? That will last days, maybe even weeks. So resealable packaging that protects items from air, freezer burn, and absorbing funky flavors from the fridge are a huge benefit to consumers and a major selling point for food manufacturers. And don’t forget about the “steamable” trend. If your flexible packaging can go from freezer to counter to freezer… and then even to the microwave, well, you’ve covered all the bases of usability!
Traditional wheat (semolina) pastas, breads, and other staple carbohydrates have had to make way on store shelves for alternative products that either reduce the carbohydrate load for consumer preference, or feature gluten-free ingredients as an option for those with sensitivities. These product categories already stand out in the crowd, so it’s a great match for manufacturers to deploy flexible packaging and make an even stronger statement in the marketplace. It is also a wise choice to protect these products in the customer’s pantry by providing better air and moisture protection than cardboard packaging could.
Once upon a time, it was unimaginable that “chip” could be preceded by anything other than “potato” or “corn.” While these snack types continue to thrive, a walk through the snack or organic aisles will reveal a chip marketplace far beyond our imaginations of 20 or 30 years ago. Chips created from rice, beans (of every color and variety under the rainbow—white, black, red, lentil, garbanzo), kale, and even seaweed have thrown their hats into the snack food ring. We all know how bad a stale potato chip tastes; there’s nothing like high quality resealable flexible packaging to protect any kind of chip, but how much more so those made from things we never thought could be “chipped” in the first place? This amazing healthy snack frontier has created great original and unique flavors, and they should be kept at their peak until enjoyed by consumers.
While other industries are just starting to recognize the value and potential in flexible packaging for its numerous benefits (usability, sustainability, reduced carbon footprint, improved manufacturing and shipping costs, aesthetics, customizability, and more), pioneers in truly healthy eating should be the first to embrace this part of the manufacturing and distribution of their products. Flexible packaging will truly delight you, and your customers. Ready to get started? Give us a call or contact us so we can put together a solution to meet your packaging needs.
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