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August 24, 2021 - Rigid Packaging

How to Address 4 Frozen Food Packaging Trends

Currently estimated at $244.3 billion, the frozen food market is rapidly expanding. This means that frozen food packaging demands will continue to rise in coming years as well, alongside new trends to meet evolving consumer preferences and market needs. Therefore, as a packaging manufacturer, it’s a good idea to take note of these trends, how they impact you and how the right adhesive can help you address them.

Trend 1: Heightened Overall Demand

In 2020, frozen food sales spiked as more consumers began working and eating at home. Since this upswing in sales, packaging manufacturers have been pressured to increase their outputs.

How This Trend Impacts You

Increasing outputs can be challenging for several reasons. As you increase production speeds, your likelihood of error or equipment maintenance issues may rise as well. In either scenario, it becomes more challenging to address output demands, causing added downtime and costs to your production processes.

How the Right Adhesive Can Help You Address This Trend

To successfully address this trend and efficiently meet high output demands, you’ll want to consider an adhesive that offers:

  • Broad Process Window:  With increasing production speeds and more challenging substrates, an adhesive needs to have a broad process window to handle a variable manufacturing environment.  A versatile adhesive will keep production lines running longer and resist stoppages due to variance in substrates or line speeds.
  • Low nozzle clogging and stringing: When adhesives become clogged in the dispensing nozzle or have a stringing effect on your product, it can increase downtime and hinder visual aesthetics. Select an adhesive that helps you avoid these issues.
  • Versatile equipment compatibility: If you opt to use automated systems to increase your output, your adhesive should be versatile across many different equipment setups; this can help you to reduce equipment costs while also reducing error likelihood.

Trend 2: Improved Sustainability

In a recent study, nearly 70% of surveyed consumers stated they would pay more for sustainable packaging. As consumers place more value on contributing to the circular economy, manufacturers have started exploring sustainable packaging production processes and materials. Many companies have even made commitments to offer 100% sustainable packaging options in the next decade.

How This Trend Impacts You

However, making the switch to sustainable packaging can create challenges. As cardboard is recycled, its fibers become shorter over time and are therefore harder for an adhesive to sufficiently wet out and bond to. This can lead to package failure and consumer dissatisfaction. To implement the recycled materials successfully, you may need to use higher adhesive quantities, leading to increased waste. This, in turn, can lower your overall sustainability. If all of the package’s materials are not compatible with recycling processes, they will need to be separated before disposal. This leads to increased energy use and overall waste.

How the Right Adhesive Can Help You Address This Trend

The right adhesive can help. When addressing the trend for sustainable packaging, consider an adhesive that provides:

  • Substrate versatility: Look for an adhesive that offers strong tack and grab to help wet out recycled materials; this will help reduce packaging failures and improve end-use performance when using difficult materials.
  • Low coat weight: Using an adhesive that can provide adhesion to recycled substrates without requiring heavier coat weights is best for increasing overall sustainability. This will ensure less adhesive material is used and help preserve resources.
  • Recycling compatibility: Ideally, your adhesive should also be compliant with recycling processes. This will help reduce the need for separation before package disposal.

Trend 3: Increased Food Product Variety

As consumers spend time cooking at home, they may rely on frozen food options to add variety to their meals while also boosting convenience. This desire for more frozen product varieties also means an expansion in packaging to encompass different food types.

How This Trend Impacts You

Though expanding your frozen food packaging capabilities to cater to more products can help your company, it may also pose challenges up front. If you create packaging for products that require a different storage temperature range than your current materials can provide, you may need to invest in new materials to meet the product’s needs. Adding more materials into your production process can also create SKU complexities, which may lead to increased downtime.

How the Right Adhesive Can Help You Address This Trend

The right adhesive can help overcome this issue. If you’re looking to expand your capabilities to packaging new frozen food products, select an adhesive that provides:

  • Wide end-use temperature range: Finding an adhesive that is compatible with a wide range of end-use temperatures can alleviate the need for using more than one adhesive in your facility. This can help reduce costs as you widen your packaging options.
  • SKU reduction opportunities: By using only one adhesive for all your frozen food packaging formats, you can reduce SKU complexities, helping to keep your lines moving and simplify manufacturing processes.
  • Increased design choices: By ensuring your adhesive is applicable to many substrates, you can broaden your package design options even when using only one adhesive.

Trend 4: Strengthened Ecommerce

Meal kits and food deliveries are increasingly popular amongst consumers. Frozen food can now be bought and shipped online, providing convenience for consumers and increased sales for packaging manufacturers.  

How This Trend Impacts You

Addressing this trend means your packaging must perform well in the shipping process, which can be challenging.Grocery stores with delivery options may make multiple stops on one trip, or require long transit periods where the food may not be refrigerated. If not, then it means the frozen food being shipped may start to thaw along the journey and create wetness. If the packaging materials are not water-resistant, the package may degrade quickly. Additionally, the package may be jostled or shaken during the shipping process. Therefore, it must be durable enough to resist breaking open prematurely.

How the Right Adhesive Can Help You Address This Trend

Fortunately, selecting the right adhesive can help resolve these potential issues. To ensure your packaging performs well during shipping and delivery processes, consider an adhesive that provides:

  • High Performance: It’s important for your adhesive to resist adhesive failure when exposed to moisture and provide strong bonding performance overall. This will ensure your products arrive at their location safely without breaking open.

Addressing these four frozen food packaging trends is easy when you use the right adhesive. Bostik’s new KizenÒ FREEZE technology provides superior adhesion for frozen packaging applications. This solution can help you improve your manufacturing processes, enhance your packaging’s performance and make consumers happy. Contact a Bostik representative today to learn more about Kizen FREEZE.

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