Food packaging is an important part of food safety as well as crucial to the continued protection of our environment. And food packaging is even more than that, as it helps to make food even more appealing to the consumers and customers. Food packaging employees and innovators must keep in mind both safety and aesthetic while remaining environmentally conscious to boot.
Having an environmentally friendly or socially conscious message clear in how you package food actually is beneficial to sales. In fact, half of people surveyed said that they are more likely to buy something packaged with a brand that they know to be working towards making a positive environmental or social impact. It’s also important to educate customers and consumers on how to handle the packaging after they have opened it. Instead of just discarding it, recycling should be pushed, as the majority of Americans (about 60%) have access to a plastics recycling program. As more and more food packaging becomes recyclable, the negative impact on the environment lessens. The food packaging industry to taking steps towards this as well. Food packaging materials can actually help to reduce food waste by almost two pounds for each pound of plastic packaging. And plastic packaging, also beneficial for it’s ability to be recycled, can be used more efficiently than other types of packaging materials. For instance, 2 pounds of plastic can effectively package an amount of beverages that you’d need at least 3 pounds of aluminum for and at least 8 pounds of steel, and a whopping forty pounds of glass. The amount of plastic used has also been reduced. In the case of a soft drink bottle, the amount of plastic used has dropped 31%. This has saved a remarkable 180 pounds of packaging in 2006 alone.
Aside from waste reduction, food packaging can help to prevent food borne illnesses as well. Food borne illnesses are, unfortunately, all too common. Every year, a whopping 48 million Americans contract some type of food borne illness. Out of that number, 128,000 require hospitalization and over 3,000 actually die. But food packaging distributors can help to prevent these illnesses from occurring by vacuum sealing their food. Vacuum preserved food has been shown to last three to five times longer, making it efficient and safe for consumers and also helping to eliminate food waste.
Food packaging is an important industry, one that is working to reduce waste and bring safe products to people all around the country and even the world.