Fruit and vegetable packaging could be on the edge of a long-life breakthrough, manufacturers have claimed.
David Wilkinson, sales director of Long Life Solutions, said modified interactive film can enhance freshness and shelf life while helping to reduce waste. And this week he revealed that major growers, packers and their supermarket customers will be using the film in packaging after three years of trials on products as diverse as parsnips and soft fruit.
“Our Long Life Smart technology is a patented breathable film when it is used as a carton or crate liner, pallet cover or retail bag and it has
demonstrated that it can eliminate dehydration and extend freshness.”
Examples of trial data include strawberries which have lasted 14 days, cucumbers 21 days,
whole head lettuce eight days, tomatoes 15 days, broccoli 30 days, stone fruit 60 days, and apples as long as five months. The long term aim is to eliminate CA containers, taking huge costs out of the supply chain. Wilkinson said that Sainsbury would be using bags made with the film for South African Cox this season.
Tesco is about to use Duobags, the latest application for whole head English Iceberg lettuce, and Asda has endorsed the film, saying that it had been “conclusively proved” and waste on tomatoes could be cut drastically, he added.
English asparagus growers have shown interest because there is the potential to extend the short six-week season by one month.
Long Life Solutions is now considering developing rigid containers and stretch films, Wilkinson said.