With 15 million tonnes of food wasted annually, many in the food industry are trying to reduce the building ‘food mountain’ with a new approach to packaging according to Packaging News. However, packaging also needs to be sustainable in order to ensure that the food mountain is not replaced by a packaging mountain. What are the coding and marking considerations for those in related industries like confectionery in both of these cases?
Reducing Food & Packaging Waste
According to Jane Bickerstaffe, Director of the Industry Council for Packaging and the Environment (Incpen), on average 10 times the resources go into making food than its packaging although consumers are actually less concerned about wasting it. Therefore people across the food industry are turning to the packaging sector to find ways to reduce this waste.
This consideration can increase the trend for single serving packages that can be eaten on the go, something that may help to alleviate the problem. However, it has also led many packaging companies to explore their options in response to manufacturers’ demands.
Many packaging manufacturers have come up with significant types of barrier technology, which protect the food contents of packs from being contaminated by water vapour, gases or other aromas, helping to preserve certain types of perishable food and give them a longer shelf-life at ambient temperatures. These substrates are continuing to make further inroads into confectionery packaging, and they represent another consideration for coding and marking.
With Easter having come and gone, it is now a time to think about clearing up all of the packaging that comes with the ever so popular chocolate eggs. Retailer Sainsbury’s has in recent years moved to 100% recyclable packaging and made more of this sustainable form of wrapping, something that is common among many confectionery brands to help alleviate the problem of packaging waste. It is a clear statement of intent that companies want to ensure that they do all they can to help the environment.
Coding & Marking Considerations
Digital coding and marking solutions allow the flexibility to deliver high quality codes on a wide range of substrates, with many different technologies available to ensure that date codes, batch numbers and more are shown clearly and are not likely to rub off.
Originally, those in the confectionery industry would only need to think about coding onto paper products. However with the advent of ever more varied packaging, starting with coated metal and now even flow-wrap, packagers have to consider an ever wider variety of substrates. Therefore the consistency that digital coders can deliver is of utmost importance in the modern confectionery industry.
So modern coding and marking machines are much more accurate when printing onto a variety of materials, but what does this mean for waste? Not only does it ensure that packagers can deliver on corporate responsibility by being able to code onto more environmentally friendly substrates, there is also waste that can be reduced on the packaging line. This more consistent and error free coding helps to reduce waste by avoiding mistakes that would not only mean they have to scrap the original and poorly coded packaging, but have to use extra power in order to do so.
If you want to find out more about how Linx coding solutions can help to deliver for confectionery marking, then have a read of our white paper today.