The most common complaint from modern consumers is that they are just too busy. This sense of overwhelm spills into everything they do, including shopping. Busy shoppers need easy meal options. At the same time, there is a growing trend towards healthy eating. For most consumers, healthy eating means fresh fruit and vegetables. And easy meals means food that is ready to eat – and perfectly packaged.
What counts towards quality?
Looks matter. Shoppers choose what they buy based on how it looks. They want their fruit and vegetables to look as fresh and healthy as they can. They also want to know that the food will still be fresh in a day or two. This need combined with the rapid rate of decay of fresh produce can make it hard for retailers to meet their customers’ demands.
Packaging is key
High-tech innovations in packaging technology have revolutionised the way we store and present food. As we study what causes food to ripen, we can begin to predict the factors that will inhibit that decay.
Fruit and vegetables ripen, rot, and decay as a result of the action of enzymes at work in their cells. Fresh produce is living matter, and it continues to live, breathe, and – ultimately – die after it has been harvested. This decay is precipitated by the level of oxygen in the gas surrounding the produce. Different products mature at different rates.
When we limit or alter the ratio of gases surrounding the fresh produce, this puts the fruit or vegetables into a state of hibernation. The respiration rate of the food slows measurably. A lower rate of respiration means a slower rate of decay. Days slower.
Perfotec Modified Atmosphere Packaging uses the results of decades of scientific research to determine how much air should be allowed into the packaging of a specific product, and how much should be allowed to escape. Using that information, each package is carefully perforated to ensure that just the right ratios of gases are allowed into and out of the package.
Studies at the Perfotec headquarters in the Netherlands report grapes and strawberries lasting up to five days longer on the shelf, while potatoes have been reported to last as many as seven extra days.
That’s a week longer to sell them. Or a week longer in the customer’s fridge .. which means more impulse buys, and fewer returns.
Do your fresh produce packers use Perfotec?
Call me on 021 530 6000 to get more shelf life out of your fresh produce.