StePac packaging benefits Chilean cherry exporters

23-Feb-2022

In China, the company’s Xgo resealable lidding film is used to house smaller 500g-2kg cherry volumes for the retail sector

StePac’s modified atmosphere packaging (MAP) has been successfully used by Chilean cherry packers and exporters during the recent export season ahead of Chinese New Year celebrations. The packaging formats helped packers transition from manual to automated processes, mitigating recent labour shortages.

The company’s Xflow proprietary films are specifically tailored for automated bulk-packaging and long-term storage and shipment of cherries. Use of the packaging reportedly reduces dependency on labor while enhancing food safety by minimising handling during the packing process. Additionally, StePac claims its product represents a considerable reduction in plastic packaging, as well as an extension of product shelf life, reduction in food waste and lowered shipping costs associated with sea freight.

The film is suitable for 2.5-5 kg packages and can be adapted to automatic fillers and packaging lines, allowing for reduced handling. It was reportedly used by more than a dozen exporters during the Chilean cherry season.

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“The exponential growth in cherry exports, coupled with major labour shortages, created major challenges for Chilean cherry packing houses, calling for more sophisticated packing operations to accommodate both jump in volume and the short and intensive packing season for cherries,” said Gary Ward, PhD, Business Development Manager for StePac.

In China, the company’s Xgo resealable lidding film is used to house smaller 500g-2kg cherry volumes for the retail sector. “We currently supply 20 Chilean exporters cherry punnets sealed with personalised printed-lidding films,” said Guillermo Perez, Category Manager for Empack, StePac’s Chilean distributor.

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