StePac announces flowpack solution for blueberries

22 Oct 2018

StePac has launched Xflow, a patented, functional, flowpack solution for blueberries as a cost-saving alternative to traditional preformed bulk packaging.

StePac announces flowpack solution for blueberries

StePac has launched Xflow, a patented, functional, flowpack solution for blueberries as a cost-saving alternative to traditional preformed bulk packaging. Xflow is said to meet market trends to reduce waste through the supply chain, save labour costs, and use leaner plastic packaging.

Blueberries in clamshells are typically manually pre-packed and sealed in modified atmosphere packaging, the company notes. This packing process can be labour-intensive. StePac was challenged to provide a solution that would enable a reduction in labour costs.

“Xflow is a next-gen automatic package that saves time and money while reducing the amount of plastic used by up to 40%,” said Gary Ward, Technical Development Manager for StePac.

Xflow combines the modified atmosphere/modified humidity (MA/MH) properties of Xtend packaging in a film that also contains a unique sealing layer, making it compatible with conventional flow pack machines. StePac partners with Delfin, an Italian machine manufacturing company that custom-designed and developed machines for Xflow packaging.

With the Xflow system, 12 clamshells are transported on a conveyor belt into the flowpack machine, where they are wrapped with the Xflow film , then sealed before being placed in the carton. This solution is claimed to reduce labour and film costs, and to result in more attractive package. Xflow is also said to improve horizontal airflow across the cartons—critical for efficient cooling and cold-chain management.

According to the company, Xflow significantly extends freshness of fruits, vegetables, and even fresh flowers by providing the MA/MH feature that slows respiration and aging, while inhibiting microbial growth. It also reduces dehydration and weight loss during storage and shipping. The customised water vapour transmission rates (WVTR) of the film are said to provide optimal moisture control for packaged produce throughout the supply chain, eliminating free moisture, thereby alleviating the risk of microbial decay.

“We specifically developed this packaging solution to help Peruvian exporters attain more efficient automatic packaging for blueberries,” said Ward. “Other customers are currently conducting commercial trials with Xflow for spring onions and green beans and we expect many additionalproduce items will benefit from this advanced solution.”

Related categories

Related tags

Natural Functional Foods

Related news

Stevia outpaces aspartame in new product launches

Stevia outpaces aspartame in new product launches

27 Nov 2018

The number of new stevia-sweetened foods and drinks overtook new products with aspartame in 2017, according to global data from Innova Market Insights.

Read more 
Nuts gain from awareness of healthy fats

Nuts gain from awareness of healthy fats

19 Nov 2018

Demand for products containing nuts is on the rise, aided by ongoing research into their health benefits and growing consumer understanding of healthy fats.

Read more 
Cranberries show promise for improved gut health

Cranberries show promise for improved gut health

19 Nov 2018

Researchers are just beginning to understand the link between the gut and many chronic health conditions, leading to growing interest in prebiotic ingredients. According to a new study, cranberries are the latest food to show prebiotic potential.

Read more 
Egg substitutes driven by vegan, allergen-free demand

Egg substitutes driven by vegan, allergen-free demand

13 Nov 2018

Egg replacers have long been used as a way to avoid to the price fluctuations often associated with real eggs, but recently interest has been driven by manufacturer demand for clean label and plant-based ingredients, allowing companies to make more veg...

Read more 
Whey protein on the rise across food categories

Whey protein on the rise across food categories

13 Nov 2018

Whey protein remains the most popular protein ingredient for athletes by far, but numerous whey protein ingredients have emerged over the past few years, in applications that take it well beyond sports nutrition.

Read more 
Mintel: China represents nuts snacks opportunity

Mintel: China represents nuts snacks opportunity

9 Nov 2018

It seems Chinese consumers’ modern lifestyles and awareness of healthy eating have opened up opportunities for nuts snacks that are either natural or provide convenience, according to Mintel.

Read more 
Could regulation tempt the industry to renew focus on low fat foods?

Could regulation tempt the industry to renew focus on low fat foods?

7 Nov 2018

The UK government aims to cut calories by 20% by 2024 in a range of popular foods, potentially shifting focus back onto foods’ fat content as companies strive to reach this target.

Read more 
FAO: commodity prices dipped in October

FAO: commodity prices dipped in October

7 Nov 2018

International food commodity prices dipped in October, as falling dairy, meat and vegetable oils prices more than offset a surge in sugar prices, the United Nations said.

Read more 
Allergen-free foods gain momentum

Allergen-free foods gain momentum

5 Nov 2018

Launches of allergen-free foods have increased in recent years – and not just because of increased prevalence of food allergy.

Read more 
Enzyme technology slashes sugar in fruit juice

Enzyme technology slashes sugar in fruit juice

2 Nov 2018

Israeli researchers have developed a new technology to cut sugar by up to 80% in fruit juice, by using enzymes that boost the fibre content at the same time.

Read more