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Singularly clear cups

Del Monte “Fruit Naturals” from Del Monte Foods, San Francisco, CA, are packed in an 8-oz clear cup with a fluted design.
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Custom-molded by Printpack’s Rampart Packaging Division the 8-oz cups are said by Del Monte salesman Jim Jones to have a nine-month shelf-stable shelf life though the products are sold as singles in the refrigerated case. At a Hy-Vee supermarket in the Midwest the cups were priced at $1.69 each. Jones says the clear cups provide a “fun” presentation for the fresh colorful fruit. The cups are a polypropylene/ethylene vinyl alcohol/PP structure in a wall thickness thicker than usual. That’s due to a “mild retort” for nearly all the products. Del Monte also markets for clubstores four-cup paperboard multipacks which carry a suggested pricing around $2.39 Jones says.

The cups feature a 2-mil polyester full-body shrink sleeve from Fort Dearborn reverse-printed flexo in 10 colors. The sleeve is also backed with a special heat-activated adhesive according to Del Monte director of packaging graphics Jim Locke. That helps it conform to the cup’s complex surface which tapers from a hexagonal base to a round top. Coded with production information the otherwise clear lidstock has a convenient finger hold for peel-off.

The products were launched in January in four varieties. Each cup contains ready-to-eat bite-size pieces of fruit. Jones says the market response has been “very good.”

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