Packages of frozen yogurt that reveal images when warmed by the human hand and rotogravure printing that results in mouth-watering images are two examples of award-winning flexible packages.
Earlier this year, the Flexible Packaging Association honored its members in the 58th Annual FPA Flexible Packaging Achievement Awards and Innovation Showcase program. The packages feature innovative enhancements in packaging excellence, printing achievement, technical innovation, and sustainability and environmental achievement. Here are four packages for dairy foods honored by the FPA.
Ink changes color on a Yoplait yogurt package
Yoplait (owned by General Mills, Minneapolis) partnered with Universal Studios on a promotion for Go-gurt, a brand of yogurt marketed to children. In the movie “Despicable Me 2,” little yellow characters are called minions.
“One of the major plot lines changes the minions from yellow to purple. Mimicking this change via our packaging seemed like a great fit for the promotional integration,” said Erica Jensen, Yoplait’s integrated communications manager.
A thermochromic ink on the yogurt tube (made of four layers of polyester and polyethylene film) turns the minions from purple to yellow when the refrigerated package warms to body temperature. Jensen said the company has used thermochromic technology in November 2006 in a promotion for the Warner Bros. movie “Happy Feet.”
For this project, the dairy processor required ink that did not contain formaldehyde because children put the packages in their mouth. Printpack, a film converter based in Atlanta, found a source on the West Coast, said Gary Borges, a national account technical manager.
Jensen said the packaging costs for this promotion were “in line” with other events and they were funded from a marketing budget. The promotion totaled more than 42 million impressions.
An Indian dairy sought an alternative to tin cans for its paneer
Ajanta Dairy of India was packaging paneer in tin cans but it want to use a sterilized flexible package. Paharpur 3P Ltd. developed a solution to package 900 grams of cheese in a stand-up pouch. The nonrecyclable packaging consists of polyethylene terephthalate (PET), aluminum foil, biaxially oriented nylon (BON) and cast unoriented polypropylene (CPP).
Debarshi Ray, the head of quality assurance and process improvement at Paharpur 3P, said the new package lowers costs because one truckload of pouches is the equivalent of 25 truckloads of tin cans. The dairy saw reductions in per-unit package costs and supply-chain costs. Additional, less warehouse space is needed.
Rotogravure printing creates mouth-watering images of Unilever's Fruttare fruit bars
In 2013, international food giant Unilever introduced its Fruttare Fruit and Milk Bars and Fruttare Fruit and Juice Bars to North America. (They had been sold elsewhere.)
Unilever required high-quality graphics and for them to be printed on an elegant white background. The wrappers include beautiful process printing of the individual pieces of fruit on the wrapper.
The bars are sold in cartons and individually. Unilever chose rotogravure printing for the wraps sold individually, typically at convenience stores. Flexographic printing was used for the wraps sold in cartons at grocery stores.
Flexible packaging supplier Sonoco, Hartsville, S.C., helped Unilever achieve a timely launch.
Schwan's home-deilvered ice cream is squeezed from a flexible package
Consumers enjoy a soft-serve ice cream parlor experience at home thanks to a flexible pouch from Schwan’s Food Group.
Squeezing the pouch extrudes ice cream through a custom-designed star-shaped fitment that creates the swirled, soft-serve effect in a cone or bowl. The package, developed by Ampac, Cincinnati, Ohio, is filled on the dairy processor’s existing equipment. Rotogravure images printed on PET are converted on pouching equipment at Ampac’s facility in Hanover Park, Ill.
The 8-ounce package was designed to be cased-packed in multipacks of four. They are sold by Schwan’s home delivery service.
Millie Nuno, Ampac’s senior market manager, food, said makers of yogurt, puddings and other products are exploring spouted pouches to give consumers “new and unique ways to interact and consume a variety of products.”