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More consumer-convenient, eco-friendly rotisserie chicken packaging

The Hot N Handy (HNH) Rotisserie Pouch has garnered an FPA Gold Award in the Environmental and Sustainability Achievement category for Robbie Manufacturing, Inc..
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Developed as a value-added alternative to rigid, two-piece, domed containers for rotisserie chickens in the retail deli hot case, the attractive, 9-color flexo-printed, slim-profile, leak-resistant, microwaveable HNH Pouch with large, non-fog window, resealable, heavy-duty zipper, and built-in carrying handle offers several functional and environmental benefits.

The proprietary coextruded film structure provides good strength and leak resistance. The window feature allows consumers to inspect the product before purchase, and a built-in gusset at the bottom of the pouch holds the package upright, helping to avoid spills. The pouch’s slim profile makes the package space-efficient both for in-store product display and storage of leftovers in the home refrigerator.

Robbie Manufacturing reports that a Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) of the HNH packaging indicates several ecological advantages. For example, the manufacture of the package versus a conventional rigid two-piece rotisserie container produces approximately 85% less CO2 emissions, and about 92% less oil is needed to manufacture the flexible pouch. The HNH pouch also dramatically reduces transportation emissions, according to Robbie Manufacturing, because more packages can be shipped per truckload.

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Packaging waste management issues also are successfully addressed by the HNH pouch. Based on packaging material weight versus more conventional rotisserie chicken containers, the LCA calculates a reduction of 95 lbs of solid waste introduced into landfills per 1000 packages. On an annual basis, this translates into a potential landfill solid waste reduction of approximately 48 million lbs—a 66% reduction in the weight of discarded rotisserie packaging introduced into the solid waste stream.

HNH’s Eco-Indicator score, based on a mathematical formula provided by LCA software, shows that rigid containers have six times more negative impact on the environment than the HNH pouches.

Homeland Stores, Inc., an Edmond, OK-based grocery store chain, implemented the HNH Rotisserie Pouch packaging for its deli departments early in 2006. Homeland deli director Darci Strait says, “We were looking for new packaging that offered a cost savings. Hot N Handy saves us 20% over the dome packaging. And our customers love it. They can pick up the pouch by the handle, and it won’t leak. The plastic domes tended to warp and lose their fit. Also, we can put more products on display at one time because the pouches take up less space than the domed containers. The packaging also is much more space-efficient in terms of shipping to our stores and storage before use versus the domed containers. So in many ways, the Hot N Handy Pouch has been a good asset for us.”

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