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Fruit snack comes in a 'nifty' cup

Introduced in late August at 7-Eleven stores across the country was Sunfresh® FruitJelite(TM), a fruit gelatin snack in a colorful textured cup and foil lid.
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Argyle TX-based UniMark Group relies on a dimpled thermoform mold and vibrant colors to give its polypropylene packages the look of real citrus fruit. The 6.5-g cups are thermoformed on a melt-to-mold system by Rexam Containers (Union MO). A white layer for the inside and a pigmented layer for the outside are coextruded in a molten state directly onto a thermoforming drum. After thermoforming cups are dry-offset printed in three colors with a UV cure. Cups are hot-filled and sealed with foil lidding at a contract packager in Canada that UniMark declines to identify. "It's a pretty standard material usage" admits Jeff King marketing vp "but the nifty thing is that we have accomplished a fruit-like appearance with our packaging." Refrigerated shelf life is 120 days which King says isn't unusual for this type of product. The snack which comes in six flavors retails for 79¢ for a 4-oz cup. Distribution will be expanded in the coming months to include the grocery trade according to the company.

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