Buderim Ginger gets new packaging

Well-known Australian producer of all things ginger has just introduced new packaging for two popular snacking and cooking products: Buderim Ginger’s Naked Ginger (Uncrystallised) 200g pack and Crystallised Ginger 250g pack.

Embracing a more contemporary design, Buderim Ginger has revealed fresh new packaging for its smooth and velvety ginger pieces – with the added benefits of functionality. These two classics are now available to consumers in an easy-to-open and resealable stand up pouch.

Maintaining their strong brand heritage and continuing to embrace their vibrant orange and retro trademark, Buderim has opted for a more functional design that consumers will love. Moving away from a shapeless, pillow-packet format that gets lost in the cupboard and can’t be re-sealed, Buderim’s new stand-alone pouch locks in freshness while still delivering the same great taste.

“In a recent national study of over 1000 people earlier this year we found the majority of our customers either purchased Naked and Crystallised Ginger as a snack or for cooking,” said Buderim Ginger Marketing Manager Jacqui Price.

“However the previous packaging format wasn’t conducive to snacking and cooking usages, whereas the new stand up pack has a lot better presence in cupboards making it easier to store and is completely resealable.”

True colour sensor for packaging & labelling

The Wenglor True Colour Sensor OFP401P0189 can detect extremely fine colour shades quicker and more accurately then the human eye.

The colour sensors can be used for a number of applications. They are suitable for the detection of colour markings on print marks, labels and packages. 

They can sort objects according to colour and check colour values for paint operations. They can also monitor how ripe fruit is, can measure colours in printing processes and have a LED function control. They can basically be used anywhere where colours or contrasts need to be detected.

The sensors can pick up colours in just 60 seconds. They can evaluate up to three colours at the same time with 3 switching outputs and 2 digital inputs. They supply RGB, XYZ or HSL colour values via the RS-232 port, and the settings can be configured via the teach-in function or teach2 software.

The sensor can accurately detect objects over large working ranges, due to its single-lens optics. The configurable emitted light and graphic display allows for easy use. 

The values produced by the sensor can be read out via the interface or digital switching outputs. The sensor also has a password protection to offer security against unauthorised access.


New gourmet Indian ready meals by Yummy Karma

Product Name: New gourmet Indian ready meals by Yummy Karma
Product Manufacturer: Yummy Karma Foods Pty Ltd
Launch date: September 2015
Ingredients: Water, Onion, Tomatoes [tomatoes, tomato juice, citric acid] (24.1%), Beef (19.7%), Long-grain basmati rice (18.6%), Potatoes (5.6%), Cooking oil, Crushed ginger, Crushed garlic (1.0%), Cooking salt, Herbs & spices (0.7%), Wheat flour (gluten), Ground red chillies (0.3%), Ground cinnamon (0.2%), Ground coriander (0.2%)

Allergy advice: Contains gluten (wheat flour)
Produced in a facility that also handles dairy and nuts
Shelf Life: 12 months
Packaging: Cardbord box with inner tray
Product Manager: Adnan Galabhai
Brand Website: https://www.yummykarma.com
Describe the product: A new range of all natural, gourmet Indian ready meals by Yummy Karma.
Indian fine dining in the convenience of your freezer.

Region-inspired Indian recipes handcrafted using only the finest, natural ingredients – no artificial nasties, preservatives, GMOs or MSG.

Locally made in NSW using 100% Australian meat and fresh produce.

Contact Email:   adnan.galabhai@yummykarma.com

Opinion: Labelling changes fall short of what’s needed

Proposed changes to Australia’s Country of Origin Labelling system are a small step towards meaningful reform but fall short of giving Australian consumers information that genuinely identifies the true origins of a product’s ingredients.

The reforms, announced by the Government in July, include a mandatory requirement to display a diagram on Australian-manufactured food products that shows the proportion of Australian ingredients.
While this is an improvement on the current system, it also means that the only originating country that will be outlined on Australian-manufactured food products will be Australia. Consumers will not specifically know which ingredients are Australian, nor the specific originating countries of the non-

A 2012 survey conducted by consumer advocacy group CHOICE found that 71 per cent of respondents felt it was crucial or very important to know where food comes from. In AUSVEG’s view, the reforms do not give them that information. You could even argue that calling the proposed reforms a ‘Country of Origin Labelling’ system is misleading when you consider consumers will be none-the-wiser about the specific origins of specific ingredients.

Meaningful Country of Origin Labelling reform also needs to clarify some of the confusing information and terms that are provided to consumers on labels. AUSVEG has long called for the terms ‘Made from local and imported ingredients’ and ‘Made in Australia’ to be dropped, as they are ambiguous, confusing and provide no meaningful information about the origins of particular ingredients.

It is pleasing that the proposed reforms remove the term ‘Made from local and imported ingredients’. It is less pleasing, however, that ‘Made in Australia’ can still be used, when you consider just how confusing it is to consumers. This was highlighted by a video released by AUSVEG earlier this year, which showed how baffled everyday Australians were by the term.

The abovementioned CHOICE survey from 2014 also reinforced this, with only 12 per cent of respondents able to correctly identify the meaning of ‘Made in Australia’. While we note the Government’s proposal seeks to clarify the meaning of ‘Made in’, we remain of the view it should be scrapped altogether.

There are some sections of the business community who continue to oppose Country of Origin Labelling reform, claiming the cost of changing labels will be too high. This assertion does not stack up, particularly when you consider how readily and easily companies change packaging for promotion and marketing purposes. Such a flimsy excuse should not be allowed to hinder the implementation of more meaningful labelling reform. Indeed, many businesses would do well to heed the wishes of their customers and provide them with the country of origin information that they so clearly desire. That is unless of course they have something to hide.

In finishing, I would reiterate that the Government has taken a step in the right direction regarding food labelling, but the current proposal falls short of giving consumers what they want. With the Government confirming it will review its new system within two years, AUSVEG will continue pushing for the genuine Country of Origin Labelling system that Australians deserve.

Yummy & sweet goodies from CTC Australia

Product Name: Joojoos New Range: Grizzo Gummy Bears, Blugo Berry Clouds, Ruby Red Strawberry Clouds, Fantismo Fantasy Belts, Reddy Belly Strawberry Belts, Kalula Cola Bottles Sour, Wilbo Worms Sour, Par-Tay Sour mix, Mega Snakes.


Product Manufacturer: CTC Australia

Grizzo Gummy Bears: Corn Syrup, Sugar, Gelatine, Sorbitol, Citric Acid (330), Artificial Flavours, Vegetable Oil, Carnauba Wax, Artificial Colours (102,110,129,133).
Blugo Berry Clouds: Sugar, Corn Syrup, Dextrose, Modified Starch, Gelatine, Sorbitol, Citric Acid (330), Pectin, Artificial Flavours, Sodium Citrate, Artificial Colours (133).
Ruby Red Strawberry Clouds: Sugar, Corn Syrup, Dextrose, Modified Starch, Gelatine, Sorbitol, Citric Acid (330), Pectin, Artificial Flavours, Sodium Citrate, Artificial Colours (124, 129).
Fantismo Fantasy Belts: Sugar, Wheat Flour, Corn Syrup, Refined Reconstituted Fruit Juice, Hydrogenated Soybean Oil, Acidity Regulators (296,330,331), Flavours, Iodised Salt, Emulsifiers(471),  Colours (102,129,133,171).
Reddy Belly Strawberry Belts: Sugar, Wheat Flour, Corn Syrup, Refined Reconstituted Fruit Juice, Hydrogenated Soybean Oil, Acidity Regulators (296,330,331), Flavour, Iodised Salt, Emulsifiers(471),  Colour (129).
Kalula Cola Bottles Sour: Sugar, Corn Syrup,  Gelatine, Sorbitol, Citric Acid (330), Tartaric Acid (334), Fumaric Acid (297), Artificial Flavours, Artificial Colours (150a).
Wilbo Worms Sour: Corn Syrup, Sugar, Gelatine, Sorbitol, Dextrose, Citric Acid (330), Tartaric Acid (334), Fumaric Acid (297), Pectin, Artificial Flavours, Sodium Citrate,  Artificial Colours (102,110,129,133,171).
Par-Tay Sour mix: Corn Syrup, Sugar, Gelatine, Sorbitol,  Citric Acid (330), Pectin, Sodium Citrate, Tartaric Acid, Fumaric Acid, Flavours, Colours (102,122,124,129, 133,150a).
Mega Snakes: Corn Syrup, Sugar, Modified Starch, Gelatine, Sorbitol, Gum Arabic, Citric Acid (330), Natural & Artificial Flavours, Vegetable Oil, Carnauba Wax, Artificial Colours (102, 110, 129, 133).

Shelf Life: 12 Months

Packaging: Hang Sell Bags and Display Box

Product Manager: Cameron Ogilvie

Packaging: Hang Sell Bags and Display Box

Brand Website: https://www.ctcaustralia.com/joojoos

What The Company Says: CTC Australia is re-launching their best sellers to focus on bringing consumers into a world full of fun and creativity. Featuring a range of cool, quirky characters like Par-Tay, Grizzo Gummy Bear and Fantisimo Fantasy belt, the new range is proving especially popular. The new range consists of Strawberry clouds, blueberry clouds, gummy bears, sour worms, sour cola bottles, sour party mix, fantasy belts, strawberry belts and mega snakes.

New Vanta Packaging Equipment arrives in Australia

Vanta have announced Motion Technologies Pty Ltd as their Australian distributor of their range of liquid packaging and handling equipment.

The range has a “whole of line” approach including, water pre-treatment, PET blow moulding, filling, blowing/filling/capping combo, labelling, wrap around and case packer, shrink wrapping, carton erecting, packing/un-packing, online inspection sorting and packing robot and palletiser/de-palletiser.

Professional service contracts and 24 hour service are available, as is 24 hour direct or remote fault diagnosis.

Existing customers include Coca-Cola, Pepsi, Carlsberg, Heineken, Budweiser, Tiger, Tsingtao, Nestle, and Unilever. Pre-treatment includes sand and carbon filters, Ultrafiltration, Nanofiltration, Reverse osmosis, UV Sterilizer and CIP (Clean in Place) systems.

Typical packaging products include bottled water, beverage, beer, edible oils, condiments and diary.


Controlling food losses through better packaging

Various packaging technologies can help food handlers remain competitive by reducing spoilage and delivering consistent, quality products.

Those involved in food and beverage packaging know well that consumers and brand owners are both demanding less food losses and increased shelf life from products. The modern food industry has developed and expanded because of its ability to deliver a wide variety of high quality food products to consumers on a nationwide and worldwide basis. This feat has been accomplished by building stability into the products through processing, packaging, and additives that enable foods to remain fresh and wholesome throughout the distribution process.  

The terms active packaging and smart packaging refer to packaging systems used with foods, pharmaceuticals, and several other types of products. They help extend shelf life, monitor freshness, display information on quality, improve safety, and improve convenience.

More recently this has been updated to include intelligent functions (sensing, detecting, recording, tracing, communicating and applying scientific logic) in order to extend shelf life, enhance safety, improve quality, provide information and warn about possible issues.

There is a commercial need to allow products to stay fresh on a retailer's shelf for longer. This extension of shelf life is aimed at slowing down the deterioration of the product using a range of processes. Each of the processes is interdependent on packaging to preserve the product in a suspended state.

The principal mechanisms involved in the deterioration of processed foods are:

  1. Microbiological spoilage sometimes accompanied by pathogen or germ development.
  2. Chemical and enzymatic activity causing the breakdown of colour, odour, flavour, and texture changes.
  3. Moisture or other vapour migration which produces changes in texture, water activity and flavour.

Therefore, to enhance shelf life the focus ought to be on:

  • Reducing microbial activity 
  • Increasing the acidity
  • Addition of additives
  • Reducing water activity
  • Modified-atmosphere packaging (Modify the immediate environment) 

Initially extending the shelf life of products was an issue for the supply chain, but it is now a consumer concern as freshness coupled with sustainable packaging has become an important buying factor. 

Consumer demands for convenience have created new innovations in the food product development and packaging industries. The widespread desire for products to use in the microwave oven has added further to the effort. Consumers are demanding more sustainable packaging solutions that also perform shelf life-extensions, whilst brand owners understand the commercial advantages that active packaging technology can deliver to their products. 

In the supply chain, more research and development work is being done on oxygen scavengers, moisture absorbers and barrier films that will enhance the shelf life of products. Consumers want packaging that keeps products clean, ready for eating, with a longer shelf life, product security and value for money. This remains a big ask, but if success is to be achieved, packaging technologists need to rise to these demands.

Active Packaging

There is a range of active packaging techniques which are available; the broad categories are:

  • Absorbers/removers: added to enclosed packaging to assist in removing or decreasing the level of oxygen in the package, also called oxygen scavengers.
  • Release systems: antimicrobial agents incorporated in the packaging used to prevent micro-organism growth on the food.
  • Self-heating/cooling: exothermic chemical reaction to generate heat and an endothermic reaction to create cooling. 
  • Selective permeation: modifying polymer properties to alter the relative permeability of gases.
  • Antimicrobial agents: control or inhibit the growth of non-desirable micro-organisms on the food surface.

Smart Packaging

In conjunction with the developments in packaging materials, which help to extend and protect shelf life, there is also a complementary group of devices which monitor the products in the packs. These include time temperature indicators and leak and gas indicators, which provide an indication to the consumer of the state or freshness of the product.

  • Time temperature indicators: operate by physical, enzymatic or chemical reactions.
  • Leak or Gas Indicators: show the absence or presence of gases.
  • Tracking services: packed goods can be tracked over the delivery and storage processes.
  • Freshness Indicators: attached inside the packaging and are dependent on any inference from temperature history, they signal product quality of the packed food.)


One of the fastest growing areas is the application of nanotechnology in packaging materials. As the food market has expanded to a worldwide marketplace, it is requiring a longer shelf life. New materials incorporating nano-particles have been able to reduce and in some cases eliminate the transmission of oxygen, and in addition have blocked the transmission of moisture from the product.

Packaging today not only has to be multi-functional by meeting design requirements, but with the added pressure towards sustainable packaging, it has to be environmentally friendly in the effort to reduce our carbon footprint.

With the daily challenges of preserving product and minimising losses, growers, packers, shippers and retailers of produce now have new packaging options that allow them to dramatically increase shelf life. 

Various packaging technologies can help food handlers remain competitive by reducing spoilage and delivering consistent quality products on every shipment. Innovations in packaging for extending shelf life will be a key driver over the next few years for manufacturers. Enhanced technical knowledge and input by packaging technologists and packaging engineers through improved performance qualities of materials will be required to fuel market growth.

Pierre Pienaar is education director at the Australian Institute of Packaging (AIP).


Packaging safety: have you missed the boat?

Getting accredited involves investment and change, but for Hannapak, it was a no-brainer.

Independent carton board packaging manufacturer, Hannapak was recently certified with FSSC 22000 accreditation after a rapid installation of less than four months.

"We were proactive, we had dedicated staff and a dedicated team putting it in," says Ben Knight, marketing manager, Hannapak.

"There's been a lot of talk about certification for years with different customers, global customers wanting certification. In years to come we'd need that certification. We could have waited until then, but we decided to get in early and set the benchmark.

"The writing was on the wall that at some point during the future it would be mandatory, so why not do it on our terms and our timing and use it as our advantage and not wait for it to put pressure on the business?"

Knight says certification gives Hannapak an advantage with future customers from the FMCG category.

"We've got customers in the FMCG business that aren't even FSSC accredited, and they were quite impressed that we were."

Hannapak decided to go down the path of FSSC 22000 accreditation as it was one of the most globally recognised.

"There was definitely a level of investment to go down that path and there was a level of change to the factory, the manufacturing facility and the culture of the business," Knight says.

Investing in change

As part of certification, Hannapak implemented a number of processes.

"When you come through the facility there is no jewellery allowed and you need covered in shoes. That safety aspect is not just for your safety, but for the safety of the products as well.

"The equipment manufacturing practices is a big component of it as well, so the cleanliness, the wash-in, wash-out of the factory, keeping the factory neat and tidy and other processes."

Different areas of the facility also had to be rearranged or modified.

"A lot of the entry points into the factory we had to either close down or make them entrance points for a washing facility. We had to take a lot of stuff out of the factory, people eating, different types of drinks, café bars, that type of thing, had to come out of the factory. You can drink water in the factory and that's pretty much it.

"Culturally, people have been working here for a long time and being a community-based employer, we have a high staff retention rate as well. A lot of those people had been here and been set in their ways for a lot of years, so we had to supply them lockers, uniforms, and those facilities, the lunch room, so they had places to go. 

"That level of investment has been logistical and then there's training as well, along with the cost of putting that accreditation in and staying accredited," Knight says.

How does certification work?

"It works like this: a consultant will come in and do a gap analysis and you'll get a list that you need to comply with and they help you through it," Knight says.

"They'll come back and say 'where are you up to with this?' And work through the process until you get to the final stage where you want to become accredited.

"Then they come through, they do that accreditation process, and there still might be a couple of things to close out. Once those are closed out, you become certified.

"After 12 months you have to be recertified and have an audit conducted of your facility to see if you are still holding those standards that were set on that previous certification. If something lapses, for example, you'll get a notice what needs to be fixed up, if that's not fixed up or closed out within a certain period of time, then you lose that certification."

Further investment

Investment at Hannapak has stretched beyond certification, with the company also updating their technology and equipment over the past few years.

The highest level of investment has been in the printing and die-cutting process, Knight says.

Hannapak has implemented "the latest high speed printing presses with the latest quality enhancements on there, being the in-process inspection. With the die-cutting, we've put high speed die-cutting in with the power registered technology. It allows us to control the process and reduce board, which is not only cost saving but a sustainability piece as well.

Further innovations in the printing process include the in-line foil technology on the printing press.

Hannapak has been able to "convert current customers from traditional methods, to using a modern foil and also customers that were using polyestermetalites substrates. We've been converting them over as the in-line foil process, which is able to go through the post-consumer recycle chain."

"Quality systems is probably where the big focus has been in the last few years so it's investing in the equipment and investing in the quality systems that go on the equipment, whether it is printing, or die-cutting or gluing, so in-lines, inspections, code readings, in-line sorting, that sort of investment," Knight says. 

"We don't focus on our competitors, we don't focus on anything else but what we have at hand, what's in front of us, but we have an end-game."

Hannapak is staying tight-lipped about future plans, but Knight says the company is "always planning for the future.

"The next 12-24 months will be 'watch this space.'

"We've invested in equipment over the last couple of years and a lot of that equipment is coming to fruition in processes and how that equipment runs. This year we have taken on some additional work, so this year we will be focussed on our customers, getting that work done and growing their businesses."

The Hannapak site visit was organised by the Australian Institute of Packaging.


The importance of Africa in the world of packaging

Africa is rapidly becoming a packaging growth centre and the industry needs to be ready to reap the benefits.

Growth centres for packaging are shifting, with Africa destined to surpass India and China as its population grows, says World Packaging Organisation (WPO) President Tom Schneider.

Africa has the most arable land suited to farming of any continent, meaning that with the right packaging and supply chain knowledge, and achieving population forecasts for 2050, African countries should be able to export across the globe.

By the end of the century, if current demographic patterns continue for another 85 years, Africa would have 4.2 billion people, against 1.1 billion today. Nigeria, whose land mass is similar to Pakistan’s or Venezuela’s, would rise from 180 million today to 910 million, registering one in 12 of the world’s births. This will require more food and more packaging, which is why the World Packaging Organisation runs Residential Training in Packaging (RTP) courses in developing countries including Nigeria, Ghana and Kenya. I have been privileged to be involved in these training schemes and the results have been encouraging.

The challenge in Africa, I found was the packaging of some agricultural products, some local foodstuffs as well as packaging for the informal sector, locally known as ‘open markets’ which is a huge percentage of sales in Nigeria. I visited a Unilever plant in Lagos and saw massive volumes of toothpaste in 15 ml sachets being packed, and was told that this was by far their biggest sales and had far exceeded sales of the larger toothpaste tubes that we are familiar with in Australia. The ‘open markets’ sell practically every possible household goods in small size flow wrapped packs or sachets consisting literally of only one day supply of the product. This is purely driven by cost and affordability.

There is a significant amount of informal packaging happening in Central and West Africa as well as throughout the African continent. This is where vendors buy in bulk and repack into small pack sizes for ‘open market’ sales. It is therefore in this area of packaging that requires support, advice and help.

Africa is on the rise, according to Sarah Smith, a Research Advisor at Reportbuyer. Economy, for the most part, is booming, given the relatively stable political scenario in the region. Africa’s GDP growth from 4.7 percent in 2013 to 5.2 percent in 2014 and the FDI growth of 16 percent, reaching $43 billion in 2014, show a positive economic trend. Countries across Africa, from mineral-rich Sierra Leone and Congo to the economies like Ethiopia and Rwanda, have shown growth across multiple macro-economic parameters, with inflation in Africa going down from 10.7 percent in 2013 to 6.2 percent in 2014. Packaging in Africa is fast catching up to meet the growing needs of a continent that is booming with investment from a vast number of foreign players. Given the relative lack of proper infrastructure, the vast distances that goods need to be transported over land from a few international ports make packaging a necessity.

Food and industrial goods imports into Africa make up a significant share of the packaging market in the region. Rising demand for packaged foods, a need to keep costs down and investments in food processing are propelling the growth of packaging in the region.

Automation of packaging is helping speed up the process of packaged goods, allowing it to meet growing demand. As the demand for packaging increases, so does the demand for automated packaging.

Africa’s middle class (defined as those earning at least US$450 per month) has triples, according to a recent study by Standard Bank. This group in the continent’s 11 biggest economies has tripled, from fewer than five million in 2000, to 15 million today. In the next 15 years its numbers may swell by another 25 million. The GDP of the biggest economies has also grown faster than its population. Africa’s demographic boom is exceptional and all indications are that the continent might be able to cope with it.

This massive growth in Africa’s middle class will have a direct impact on the purchasing power shift into the future. It’s this shift that we in packaging have to be aware of, plan and prepare for, and ensure that necessary steps, like education and training happen now so that all involved can reap the multitude of benefits in the years to come.

Education, I believe, is what stands between wherever we may be now and a successful, productive, competitive and rewarding future. Packaging is a science and if we want to prevent a void of knowledge in the near future, then we need to ensure that we continually update our knowledge.

Management consultants for retailers, wholesalers and manufacturers suggest that the packaging industry will suffer if it does not take itself seriously enough and ensure that its participants are continually being educated to improve packaging knowledge and skills.

Africa in this regard is no different to the rest of the world and so I’d like to suggest that back-to-strong-basics, consolidation of business, a cooperative, consultative approach within the industry, underpinned by ongoing education will ensure that Africa meets the needs of the future in a vibrant packaging industry; and I wish them and those that assist them, every success.

Pierre Pienaar is education director at the Australian Institute of Packaging (AIP).



Three most innovative manufacturers named

Three manufacturers have made the BRW “50 Most Innovative Companies 2014” list.

#24 Coca Cola Amatil

Coca-Cola Amatil (CCA) came in at number 24, with a partnership with Trax Technologies to create a mobile, cloud-based application which uses Trax photo recognition software for data capture of shelf share and category performance.

One of the key measures that Coca-Cola Amatil (CCA) uses in outlets is “shelf share” in coolers. The innovation came after CCA identified a need for accurate, real-time data and visuals of the cooler shelves.

The tools used by business development executives (BDEs) to capture this data were outdated, sporadically used and manually inputted. In addition, national customer centre (NCC) consultants did not have visibility of the data and were selling blind to customers over the phone, which meant sales opportunities were being missed

Using the image recognition software, Trax provides a detailed and unbiased view of shelf share to the BDEs, NCCs and other customer-facing staff. When NCC consultants call the customer for their order, pictures of the store coolers pop up on their screens, providing the visual information and analysis needed to tailor an order.

CCA is the first company in the world to have full channel coverage using Trax image recognition technology. And in the first five months, the financial impact of Trax has been substantial additional sales revenue and a 1 per cent increase in shelf share.

#30 Pernod Ricard Winemakers

Pernod Ricard Winemakers was placed at number 30, after the business identified a need to invest in creativity to unlock innovation among employees.

To foster a creative culture, Pernod Ricard Winemakers developed and implemented a creativity leadership program. Th!nk: Creative Leadership Lab was designed to internalise behaviours of creative problem-solving to build a culture of creative leaders within the business.

The program was created in-house, so was specifically tailored to the needs of the business. The sessions used real business challenges, such as how to improve employee engagement. This ensured that the outcome of training could be applied directly to real-time needs.

The direct outcome from Th!nk: Creative Leadership Labs was the transformation of employees into engaged creative leaders. The training modules ensured that key players from across the business had established their own creative confidence and were better equipped to drive creativity and cultural change on a day-to-day basis.

#48 Birch & Waite Foods

Birch & Waite (B&W) secured a spot at number 48 and is the only Aussie owned and run food business on the list.

B&W manufactures a wide range of sauces, dressings and desserts in a variety of package sizes. One of the sizes is a single portion pack (15 grams to 40 grams) which is made for airlines.

BRW recognised B&W for its innovative manufacturing solution to meet the evolving needs of the airline catering industry, which has taken to commissioning famous chefs to improve food presentation. These chefs requested dressings which had separate oil and vinegar-based components in the style of traditional dressings which need to be shaken prior to serving.

To fulfil this requirement, B&W needed production equipment with two independent fillers for two separate ingredient 'shots’. A further requirement was that when running in single shot mode, the second filler could be removed from the production line for cleaning, thus providing a faster changeover from one product to the next.

As no equipment meeting this specification existed in Australia, B&W engaged on a global search and found an overseas manufacturer able to custom-build a machine to meet these demanding requirements.

As a result of this innovation, sales from this pack size have grown an incremental $3.8m (+110 per cent) in less than two years to $7.3m.


Packaging security: are you covered? [VIDEO]


In this week’s video we focus on packaging security, what it involves and ways to reduce the risk of tampering.

We zone in on tamper-evident packaging design, why it first came about and some the different packaging types.


Consumer demand for antibacterial packaging on the rise

Increasing consumer concerns surrounding the development of germs in packaged food could open up further demand for antibacterial packaging, says Canadean.

According to a recent report from the market research company, over 50 percent of respondents are more concerned about bacteria on the outside of cans than the presence of dirt, dust or dents in the packaging.

The survey also revealed that in addition to concerns over the transportation and storage of grocery products, there is a growing concern about the presence of bacteria and germs on everyday items.

The research revealed that 55 percent of British respondents were either “concerned” or “very concerned” about germs on the outside of cans. Those aged 18-24 years were the least likely to view bacteria as an issue (49 percent) and those aged 55 and older the most (63 percent). Males are more likely to be worried about bacteria (57 percent) compared to females (53 percent).

In addition, consumers are more worried about the presence of bacteria on canned products than signs of dirt on packaging (42 percent), or dust on a can (32 percent). When it comes to the presentation of cans, consumers are still more worried about bacteria, but less about the deformation of a can (46 percent) or if a label is discoloured (48 percent).

“Consumers are becoming more conscious about the distribution and storage of grocery products and the implications this has on the safety and quality of food,” says Michael Hughes, lead analyst at Canadean.

“As such, there is a clear demand for products that have antibacterial packaging to help reassure consumers. This will be particularly true with products that are purchased on-the-go and from retailers that consumers are unfamiliar with and where they are less confident about the safety and quality of products.

“Given that older consumers are most worried about the presence of bacteria – which can be linked to a greater level of concern about immunity and maintaining health, the demand for antibacterial packaging will only intensify in the future as society continues to age.”


Zacpac opens $25m manufacturing facility

Zacpac has unveiled a $25m manufacturing facility in Stapylton, near Queensland’s Gold Coast.

The facility stretched over 8,000sqm and will significantly expand the company’s production of its corrugated packaging, litho laminated packaging, and litho cartons when it is fully operational in early 2015.

The factory is now operational, while the management offices are still under construction. By the end of this year, the new production hub will employ 30 people.

Director John Zac hopes to employ more than 100 in the following year, while increasing production and services from northern NSW to North Queensland.

One of the first machines to go into the Stapylton stable, a BCS Autobox automated custom box maker supplied by DES, is now firing out boxes in runs as short as one.

The Autobox can manufacture boxes in any size or shape that the customer requires – from a small cupcake box up to a double sized fridge. It shifts from one style or size to another automatically, and starts producing straight away.

The new production hub will complement the company’s existing distribution warehouse on the Gold Coast and shorten turnaround times for customers based as far north as Cairns. The company has grown by more than 30 percent year on year over the last three years, after enticing some major multinational clients in the food and beverage, personal care, and wine markets.

Director John Zac said “The latest expansion is all about living up to new clients’ expectations while maintaining service for our existing customers.

“As we introduce a new machine, we install it and get it up and running. So we are slowly adding the next machine, and the next, and so on, to get production going at the new site. A project like this does not happen overnight. We will begin employing new staff as we add new machinery, and with each new machine we install, we will need more people at the company, thus creating more jobs.

“The machine suits the company’s focus on shorter runs, which sets them apart from larger competitors who accept only high volume, high output jobs. As well as our big multinational clients, our customers also include mum and dad businesses working out of rental factories, who may only order 150-200 boxes at a time.

“While our machines are also high speed and high output, we go shopping for specific equipment like the Autobox to serve shorter runs. Even with our high-speed machines we can produce runs of just 250 boxes. Our opposition’s minimum is more like 2500.”


International companies to exhibit at AUSPACK

26 international packaging and processing companies have signed up to be exhibitors at AUSPACK.

Luke Kasprzak, Portfolio Director – Industrial Division, Exhibition and Trade Fairs, said “26 international companies have already booked which will give visitors the opportunity to see the latest global innovations.”

“Having international companies such as Krüger & Salecker, Cama Group, Daxner Pacific, Lothar A.Wolf Spezialmaschinen, Sacmi, Concetti Group, Leibinger and BrauKon as exhibitors, introduces a new offering for the visitors,” Kasprzak said.

“These companies will bring new product ranges and innovations that companies within the Australian Food & Beverage, Pharmaceutical industries may have not seen.” he said.

AUSPACK 2015 will be held on 24 – 27 of March at the Melbourne Convention & Exhibition Centre.

For more information, click here.


SITA wins sustainability award for packaging innovation

SITA Australia has received top sustainability honours at the 2014 Australian Business Awards for its de-packaging unit.

The unit, which is a first of its kind in Australia, separates food packaging from its contents to maximise organic resource recovery, and subsequently diverts these resources –  which includes anything from sauce bottles, powdered baby formula, coffee products and tea bags to pet food – from landfill.

General manager of national key accounts Peter Stephens said SITA was proud to expand its suite of resource recovery solutions to help Australian businesses put their waste to good use.

“SITA is the only waste management company in Australia to offer this innovative de-packaging solution, which transforms food waste into valuable resources while helping our customers reduce waste disposal costs,” said Stephens.

“Through this innovative resource recovery solution, products such as plastic coffee capsules, which previously would have been sent directly to landfill, are processed to allow the packaging to be recycled while the actual coffee is transformed into nutrient-rich compost.”

“Finding smart and reliable solutions to help our customers achieve their sustainability goals is at the heart of what we do, so we are incredibly proud to be formally acknowledged with this prestigious award,” he said.


RollsPack launches Gravure printing press

RollsPack launched its multimillion dollar Gravure press at the company’s print manufacturing premises in Braeside, Victoria on 26 June. 

City of Kingston mayor, Paul Peulich, opened the event and managing director Phillip Rolls introduced the Gravure press and shared his personal thoughts on the way forward for local industry.

Guest speakers at the event included John Roskam, executive director, Institute of Public Affairs and columnist at The Australian Financial Review and Ken Morgan OAM, founder of Kid’s Under Cover. 

RollsPack’s Factory and Operations Manager James Luttick launched the press, leading the audience through the features of the Gravure.

The press, previously not offered by an Australian SME, will bring jobs to the industry while offering shorter turn-around times in small and large print runs.

By making the significant investment in print packaging’s future, Phillip Rolls hopes to inspire other businesses to stay focussed on furthering local industry.  


tna opens new Thailand office

Global packaging and processing solutions company, tna has opened a new office in Bangkok, Thailand as part of its move to further expand its operations in Asia.

The new Bangkok office will host tna sales, project management and service teams and will enable the company to better serve its growing number of customers, both locally in Thailand and across Asia.

tna’s on-the-ground team will also be able to closely monitor market trends and activity across the region, facilitating the development of new, region-specific technology to better respond to local needs.

Leading the office as general manager for Asia, Paul Webster, who previously held the position of regional sales manager Australia within the company, will use his expertise to further establish the company in the Asian market. Webster will oversee all aspects of tna’s Asian operations including sales and customer service.

“I’m thrilled to be taking this next step in my career at tna. Asia represents a significant market for tna and I’m pleased to be supporting our operations in the region. My previous experience will help me to connect with customers and maximise the company’s sales potential. The role of general manager for Asia is great opportunity for me personally, and I’m looking forward to the new challenge.”

Managing director of tna, Michela Green said that the new office will allow the company to “bolster the exceptional levels of service” that tna is renowned for.

“tna customers in this region will instantly benefit from the ease of contact with our in-house experts, a fast response to any queries and enhanced regional support, as well as the flexibility to meet their specific requirements," said Green. "Paul has already proved himself to be a great asset to tna through his impressive technical knowledge and dedication to customer service; we’re delighted that he is heading up our new office.”


Ageing population: a missed opportunity for manufacturers?

Manufacturers in Australia need to recognise the value of Australia’s ageing population and adjust their packaging accordingly, said Fergal Barry from Arthritis Australia.

Presenting at the Australian Institute of Packaging’s National Conference, Barry, the strategic partnerships manager at Arthritis Australia, said Australia’s ageing population is becoming increasingly frustrated with hard to open or inaccessible packaging.

Over the past 20 to 30 years, packaging has become increasingly difficult for consumers to negotiate thanks to the requirements to ensure products are child resistant, tamper resistant, theft resistant and/or portion controlled.

He said one in two Australians face difficulty opening or reading packaging, 89 percent have been frustrated or furious with packaging, and 53 percent have suffered an injury as a result of inaccessible packaging.

With Australia’s ageing population, manufacturers need to reconsider who they’re targeting with their packaging, Barry said, and realise that the elderly represent a huge opportunity.

“They are largest and fastest growing sector in developed and developing countries,” he said. “They are the biggest, they are the fastest growing and they have the [largest share of] wealth … When you identify that issue, your market actually increases.”

Relatively small changes to elements of packaging, such as increasing the font size or using colour to distinguish between different product ranges can make a big difference in winning disgruntled consumers back, and also in creating a point of difference for your brand, Barry said.

“With this global change in the market place, a smaller company can have an advantage over the bigger players because of their ability to adapt.

“Accessibility can be a competitive advantage … it’s a way to compete and a way for SMEs to take market share away from the major players,” he said.

Barry added that 6.5 million Australians have difficulty with vacuum-sealed plastic containers, for example, so if manufacturers adjust their packaging to improve accessibility, this improvement needs to be clearly conveyed to consumers.

“If a consumer has a negative experience … it’s not enough just to fix the packaging. When they see that pack, they have a negative association either with your brand or the pack format.”

Manufacturers need to communicate the ease of packaging or the change in packaging that now makes it easier to access, he insists.

Barry would like to see the roll-out of a national ‘ease of use’ certification scheme, where products are independently tested by consumers and their accessibility clearly conveyed on retailers’ shelves.

A step in the right direction has been the development of the Initial Scientific Review (ISR) – a result of collaboration between Nestle, Arthritis Australia, NSW Health and Georgia Tech. The ISR is being used by Arthritis Australia to evaluate and improve the packaging of hundreds of products from over 50 companies both in Australia and internationally. It has been adopted by NSW Health to evaluate the food packaging of its suppliers, ranking them from -8 to +8, to help make food packaging easier to open for elderly or frail hospital patients.

“The +8 to -8 rating gives a standard method to compare products’ ease of opening and legibility, so an organisation can compare two competing brands of a similar product, or a manufacturer can compare two design solutions for a product,” said Barry.


FSANZ to examine safety of food contact materials: AFGC

Geoffrey Annison, director health nutrition and scientific affairs at the Australian Food and Grocery Council, says that consumer concerns surrounding the migration of chemicals from packaging into food has highlighted a gap in the nation’s food safety regulation, and that food manufacturers need to be prepared for possible changes to legislation.

As a result of this gap, the government’s food safety body, Food Standards Australia and New Zealand (FSANZ) is on the path to potentially developing new regulation that addresses consumer concerns associated with food contact materials, both in terms of packaging and processes.

Annison told the 2014 Australian Institute of Packaging National Conference this week that FSANZ has taken inspiration from the European Food Safety Authority, which is increasingly focusing on the regulation of packaging, with particular attention to the migration of chemicals from packaging and food contact materials into food.

Annison brought up numerous examples of consumer concerns relating to packaging including BPA in plastics, mineral oil from recycled cardboard, discussions of phthalates in lids and more recently issues relating to the use of nanotechnology in food and food packaging.

“If there are any concerns about packaging, they don’t go away,” said Annison. “Even though we might deal with these issues when they come up, they never go away now with the internet. It is critically important that we understand when we are dealing with these issues not only how they are occurring, but also how we deal with them in the longer term.”

Consumer protection to be a point of focus

Annison said that FSANZ identified a gap in regulation relating to food contact material, and that consumer protection will be a specific point of focus during regulatory discussions.

“FSANZ have started some initial discussions with industry… and the AFGC was part of the initial advisory group that was pulled together to give advice… Last week they announced that they will be notifying the potential to raise proposal P1034… with a full release of the discussion paper later in the year.

“They are keen to avoid the re-runs of the issues such as BPA, and rather they want to develop a framework for the regulation of food contact materials.”

Annison says that in addition to P1034, FSANZ are also developing proposal P1025 which is a complete plain English re-write of the food standards code which came about as the result of a court case six years ago, where FSANZ’s code was criticised for being too difficult to interpret. Annison also noted that P1025 had references to packaging material in the draft edition that he had viewed.

“Under current regulations, there is very general advice about ensuring foods are safe when using materials that are in contact with food. Elsewhere there are specific limits on migration packaging components and this is what they are now proposing in proposal P1025 – to give general advice on packaging.”

Annison says that under proposal P1034, FSANZ are proposing to develop another industry advisory group to look at potential hazards and industry practices. He says that the proposal will look at current risk and residual risk with a particular focus on virgin packaging and recycled packaging. Annison also noted that FSANZ will be focusing on smaller packaging companies.

“They are not particularly concerned about the larger packaging companies, but they are a little bit concerned about some of the smaller packaging companies – not because there is any evidence of health risks associated with them, but just because they are not so familiar with those companies. So this is an opportunity for those companies to step up and talk about the technologies that they are using and essentially demonstrate to FSANZ why they are safe.”

Annison says that FSANZ will be exploring a number of avenues to address the issue, ranging from the general provisions that are currently in place under the food standards code, to potential regulatory, co-regulatory and self-regulatory options.

“We at the AFGC think that there should be a best practice regulation which includes the opportunity for self-regulation and code… But we must not forget that it is about consumers, and they want to know everything there is to know about food products including packaging and the environment."

Consumers have trust issues with industry

Annsion admitted that some consumer groups are not overly keen on the idea of industry self-regulation as “they don’t trust the industry” to provide a comprehensive account of the information that they seek. Annison says that the industry has a wealth of opportunities to demonstrate to consumers that they can be trusted, and pointed to the use of smartphone apps are a powerful tool to provide additional information.

“This is the concept of extended labelling,” says Annison of the smartphone apps.
“They may focus on nutrition, allergens or indeed packaging… The apps mean that labels themselves no longer limit the amount of information that we can provide consumers, and the AFGC will be making this point when it comes to advising the government on potential packaging regulations and information about packaging.”

Annison says that consumer and public health advocacy groups will be looking for strong regulations, and that now is the time for industry to promote self-regulatory responses by adopting the use of smartphone technology.

“Food and grocery packaging is a policy and regulatory challenge. There is international precedent for greater regulation, and hopefully there will be evidence based regulatory measures used [in the development process], but regulators will have a precautionary approach – they will err on the side of consumer protection,” says Annison.

“The AFGC will be in contact with packaging companies and with their industry bodies representing them to perhaps work out the best way to manage this issue to make sure that the regulatory response that may come out of FSANZ is as benign as possible in terms potential impact on industry but still basically serves the fundamental role of regulatory arrangement which is to provide the consumer with protection.”


Micro Pacific joins GS1 Australia’s Alliance Partner Program

Labelling and supply chain solution organisation Micro Pacific Pty Ltd, has announced they are joining GS1 Australia’s Alliance Partner Program.

“Micro Pacific’s announcement to enter into the GS1 Australia Alliance Partner program is a great asset to the Alliance Partner community. Micro Pacific will help businesses of all sizes with the implementation of the GS1 System from scanning and labelling to data management,” Joseli C Münive, national manager of Alliances & ICT Industry at GS1 Australia said.

Michael Ribbons, Business Analyst at Micro Pacific said “By becoming an Alliance Partner we hope to bring further benefits to our supply chain clients. These benefits include standardisation across the supply chain sector and advances in the application of barcode and RFID technologies."

Micro Pacific helps suppliers meet retail shipping requirements by providing two pieces of software called Data Manager for fully automated EDI and Scan Pack.

The Data Manager EDI (Electronic Data Interchange) platform is designed to support integration with just about any accounting, ERP or WMS package. Data Manager's workflow layer can be configured to support any combination of business rules.

Micro Pacific Scan Pack takes care of scanning and labelling of outgoing products in the warehouse. The latest iteration, Scan Pack version 6, has been designed with efficiency in mind. The Scanner Command feature allows users to answer dialog prompts by scanning barcodes – meaning they don't have to put the scanner down as often to use the touch screen or mouse.