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Microwaveable retort pouches suit sauces

Converted by CLP Industries Ltd.
FILED IN:  Package Component  > Films
(www.clppackagingsolutions.com) stand-up easy-open easy-pour pre-formed preprinted pouches for UK-based food retailer Marks & Spencer’s new line of retorted shelf-stable sauces have earned an FPA Gold Award in the Printing Achievement category.

The laminated film supplied by North Yorkshire-based JMP (www.jmpackaging.com) is a PET/HBPET/BONYL/CPP (polyethylene terephthalate/high-barrier polyethylene terepthalate/biaxially oriented nylon/cast polypropylene) structure about 100 microns thick. The absence of foil in the structure enables the product to be conveniently microwave-heated in the pouch.

CLP converts the pouches on Totani pouch-making machines. The cast polypropylene layer provides an even uniformly opaque white background which eliminates the need for a lay-down of thick white ink. The CPP layer improves the overall pouch appearance and also enhances pouch seal strength. The 8-color graphics are gravure-printed on the outer PET layer accentuated by the bright white CPP background.

The Marks & Spencer sauces are co-packed by Baxter of Scotland using fill/seal equipment manufactured by Toyo Jidoki. Fill/seal speeds for the 250-g pouches are 60 per minute.

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Introduced during the Christmas 2005 holiday season the pouched sauces are marketed in three seasonal varieties (turkey gravy cranberries in ruby port sauce and blueberry dessert sauce) and one year-round variety (vanilla custard). All four sauces have a nonrefrigerated shelf life of 12 months.

Consumers have responded well to the packaging’s many convenience aspects including lightness of weight easy non-refrigerated storability microwaveability easy tear-open notch easy pourability for full product evacuation and easy disposability of flattened empty pouches. In addition for the sauce processor/packager the high surface-to-content ratio of the pouch allows a relatively short dwell time in the retort chamber versus jars or cans. This prevents overcooking of the sauces and enables protection of their quality and delicate flavors. —Judy Rice

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