Following talks with a number of European supermarket chains, eco-friendly food packaging firm KCC has installed a new pilot production line to apply its unique barrier coating to biodegradable food trays for the ready meals market.
The marriage of bagasse – a by-product of cane sugar production – and a waterproof barrier makes the trays the most environmentally friendly packaging on the market today.
Until now bagasse and other plant fibre-based packaging had not been viable for wet food ready meals, but new tests show the KCC barrier trays perform as well for durability, wet strength and effectiveness in cooking, as traditional trays.
Kevin Clarke, KCC Packaging – “With ever more ready meals being sold, and subsequently trays going to landfill, I’m confident that our plant-based, low carbon trays can help supermarkets reduce their carbon footprints, as these trays are the most natural green alternative for supermarkets and food manufacturers”
The new tray can be microwaved, used in an oven, frozen and then either recycled as paper fibre or put on the compost.
KCC Packaging’s developer, Chartered Environmentalist Kevin Clarke, has nearly 40 years of experience in this market and already brought a range of innovative food packaging products to market.
He said: “In discussions with a number of supermarkets during our pilot production phase we see that Environmental managers are realising the advantages that bagasse or bamboo trays have over conventional CPet and Aluminium: the ability to biodegrade, lower carbon footprint needing fewer carbon credits and subsequent reduced impact on landfill.”
Clarke added: “Since the KCC barrier trays will be the same size as existing CPet ones, there will be no expensive changes necessary to the manufacturing process, allowing an easy changeover for food manufacturers.
“With ever more ready meals being sold, and subsequently trays going to landfill, I’m confident that our plant-based, low carbon trays can help supermarkets reduce their carbon footprints, as these trays are the most natural green alternative for supermarkets and food manufacturers.”