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Packaging advances freshness for Nogales shippers

Nogales, AZ, distributors have moved with the times in making some changes to packaging.

Covilli Brand Organics, for one, is phasing out its plastic packaging wherever possible and moving towards recyclable cardboard packaging, said Alex Madrigal, president.

Lesley Sykes, business development manager at the Sykes Company, reports, “Retailers seem to have continued focus on convenience packs, something we’re exploring for our smaller squash sizes. We’re also seeing a general trend towards stacked barcodes on PLU stickers.”

For its part, SunFed is betting on a “modified atmosphere, modified humidity” box liner to help its produce stay fresher as it goes through the supply chain, said Matt Mandel, vice president of operations.

The StePac offering, which goes inside a master container, is like a bag and puts produce “to sleep” to regulate gases.

By lowering carbon dioxide levels and raising oxygen, the technology can slow down respiration and extend shelf life for an additional 10 to 21 days, depending on the item.

SunFed is also looking to extend the technology to the retail level, so consumers can count on getting higher quality produce.

This is an excerpt from the most recent Produce Blueprints quarterly journal. Click here to read the full supplement.