After attending The Summer Fancy Food Show at the Javits Center in New York City, I learned two things: the packaging needs for the retail food business are limitless and the amount of packaging that the food industry uses is endless. Trying to navigate the crowds was a difficult task, but nonetheless it was one well worth it. I was able to introduce myself to companies that have been around for decades as well as to those companies that are up and coming. Each of these companies had unique packaging needs that Tri-Cor Flexible Packaging has the ability to provide to them. Most of the companies that were there used some sort of stand-up pouch for at least some of their products. At Tri-Cor, we are able to supply stand-up pouches in a variety of sizes, colors, and with customized high quality printing up to 10 colors. Through these trade-shows, Tri-Cor gets to meet new potential clients, and do what we do best, provide for their flexible packaging needs and solve their flexible packaging wants, while providing great customer service.
Soup consumption is flat around the world, with the category recording volume growth of less than 1% globally in 2013. While there are some growth opportunities across the developing world, soup volume sales have been on a downward trajectory across most of the Western world for half a decade. This is particularly the case for the largest category, canned/preserved soup, which is in decline across much of Europe and in Australia. The forecast performance for canned/preserved soup is even less promising, with a value CAGR decline of 2% expected in Spain, France and Italy, 5% in Australia and close to 6% in the Netherlands.
Canned/Preserved Soup Growth Prospect by Region – 2013-2018
Source: Euromonitor International
Why are Consumers Rejecting the Can?
The problem is not necessarily soup’s fault, but its packaging, the metal food can. Consumers are rejecting this packaging format.
Metal food cans are notoriously difficult to open. The can is also one of the heaviest packaging formats and is consequently responsible for a large carbon footprint. In addition, metal food cans tend to look virtually identical on supermarket shelves.
Metal food cans have consequently been rejected by younger generations as a dated packaging format filled with old-fashioned-type foods. Soup in metal food cans is still largely assumed to be limited to tomato, chicken noodle, minestrone and pumpkin.
That Campbell Soup felt inclined to use a half-a-century-old Andy Warhol painting to help promote itself – albeit as a limited collector’s edition – is indicative of the problem. Metal food cans are considered a pack type from a bygone era. This is a problem facing metal food cans all the way down the canned food aisle, but it is particularly pertinent in relation to soup.
Such preconceptions are so prevalent in the consumer’s mind that even if new, exciting and exotic flavours were launched in a metal can format, consumers would barely notice.
The can is clearly the problem.
Could Stand-Up Pouches be the Answer?
Stand-up pouches are an attention-grabbing futuristic pack type with none of the negative connotations that tend to haunt metal food cans. The lightweight nature of stand-up pouches significantly reduces their carbon footprint. They are also far easier to open than the metal food cans they are replacing. Furthermore, the larger flat front of a stand-up pouch can be virtually used as a billboard, making it highly suitable for the promotion of new flavours. This is a benefit that brand owners have embraced. Campbell’s Go is available in flavours such as Spicy Chorizo and Pulled Chicken with Black Beans, Coconut Curry with Chicken and Shiitake Mushrooms and Smoked Gouda with Red Pepper.
The sum of all these benefits provides an additional advantage – retailers are able to charge higher unit prices for gourmet soups in stand-up pouches. They are therefore being heavily promoted by grocery retailers.
Who Will Deliver the Knock-Out Pouch?
Stand-up pouches for soup are already showing promise in a couple of markets, namely the US and Australia, championed in both cases by the two biggest soup manufacturers in the world, Campbell Soup Co and HJ Heinz Co. Campbell’s Go has been a success in the US, but this does not necessarily mean that it will be Campbell which dominates the trend globally.
In Australia, for example, it has been HJ Heinz Co, with its Heinz Soup of the Day, which has had the biggest impact. Heinz Soup of the Day has not been quite as adventurous. Instead of the mushroom soup flavour popular in metal food cans, the stand-up pouch version is marketed as “mushroom with a hint of thyme”. Pea soup, meanwhile, has been transformed into the more appealing “minted garden pea”. And so on.
A battle is likely to rage between the two soup giants over the next few years as to who will win the spoils of this new opportunity.
The Stand-Up Pouch May Even Save the Entire Canned Food Aisle
The progress of pouches has not been limited to soup. A similar trend is occurring in canned beans, where HJ Heinz Co has launched Heinz Beanz of the Day. HJ Heinz Co has also launched ketchup in a stand-up pouch, although it has not been embraced by consumers.
The prospect of stand-up pouches emerging as a key packaging format in other categories, where their combination of light weight, easy opening and eye-catching futurism is appealing, is strong. Such opportunities particularly exist in stagnant or declining canned/preserved food categories, where the unenticing reputation of the metal food can as an old-fashioned pack type indicates the need for a major transformation in order to regain consumer interest.
It is uncertain at this early stage to what extent stand-up pouches will take over categories previously dominated by metal food cans, but it is possible that one day consumers will no longer walk down the canned food aisle in supermarkets, instead walking down the “pouched food aisle”.
See more at: http://blog.euromonitor.com/2014/01/will-the-stand-up-pouch-save-soup.html#sthash.f1hOklds.dpuf
PCI Films Consulting Ltd. has released a report showing the growth of the stand-up pouch in flexible packaging. Stand-up pouches currently have a global demand of 80 billion units, with a growth rate estimated at 5-8 percent per year. The US market only has increased by 50% in the last 5 years.
A number of factors are pushing the growth of the stand-up pouch market.
machinery improvements in terms of speed and ability to incorporate items such as zippers
improvements in barrier films
environmental benefits such as lower storage costs
Lumber covers ward off the elements during outdoor storage and shipping and are produced with UV inhibitors and low slip surfaces. (UV inhibitors are chemical additives that are added to plastic which help to retard the damaging effects of ultraviolet light to the plastic). Available in numerous film colors and as both monolayer and co-extruded products, our lumber covers are tailored to your exact load dimensions. And with our array of printing capabilities, your lumber covers can reinforce your company’s image and communicate product descriptions, instructions and other messages.
Why have printed lumber covers?
When your company logo is printed on lumber covers your brand image is displayed during shipping, storage, at a location like home depot, even on a job site. You will increase your exposure tremendously with great advertising.
Top reasons for lumber covers:
You keep your product protected from harsh weather
They protect against vandalism and theft
Covers send the message that you care about the products and that your products are worth protecting
Protective Slip Sheets: The cost effective alternative to fiber slip-sheets.
Protective slip sheets save you room in your warehouse and space in your shipping cost. Plastic slip sheets take up significantly less space than fiber slip-sheets and wood pallets. A 5” pallet takes up 80 times more space than a 1/16” slip-sheet.
Plastic protective slip sheets are die cut flat sheets which are utilized in handling, storage, and shipping of goods. The replace traditional pallets and fiber slip sheets. Plastic slip sheets allow you to move packaged goods for less. You will be able to ship more product, in less space, and reduce overall freight cost associated with packaging.
Plastic slip sheets compared to fiber slip sheets:
Cornstarch Bags: Almost half of the biodegradable poly bags use cornstarch incorporated into the plastic. The cornstarch component will begin to decay when exposed to a microbe rich environment. This breaks the plastic into tiny pieces.
Photo Sensitive Bags: These bags are designed to decay with prolonged exposure to the ultra violet rays in sunlight.
Oxo-Biodegradable Bags: These bags are among the most economical to manufacture and the most effective to use. They are completely biodegradable. This happens in a two-step process. First, the bag is oxidized by prolonged exposure to the oxygen in the air. After that, the oxidized fragments convert into carbon dioxide, a harmless biomass and water.
Bags Using Aliphatic Technology: Somewhat similar to using starch to encourage nature to deconstruct poly bags, Ailphatic poly bags also rely on microbes to breakdown the bag into its constituent molecules.
If you follow us on twitter you know we jumped on the band wagon and joined pinterest! I’ve had a personal pinterest account for a while now, and I am borderline obsessed with it. I’ve planned my friends weddings, redecorated my house, and made the most amazing meals all on this virtual pin board. What has been most beneficial for me though has been the ability to learn and be exposed to really interesting, and innovative products. I thought it would it be a great tool to display some of my favorite packages, pouches, bags, printed pallet cover advertising, and innovative packaging solutions. Each day I am “pinning” a new product, called our packaging of the day, something that caught my eye. Every Friday I will recap my favorites on the blog. So make sure to check us out on twitter and pinterest.