February 3, 2021
As consumers become more environmentally conscious, they are looking for the same kind of commitment to the environment from the brands they support.
CPGs recognize this evolution and have been pursuing initiatives that will make their companies and their products more sustainable. Part of this equation is directly connected to the use of more sustainable packaging, which is evident in the fast-growing refrigerated and frozen foods category. One new solution is the Natrellis packaging portfolio from Sonoco and Tellus Products. Made entirely from U.S.-grown sugarcane, an annually renewable resource, Natrellis uses upcycled sugarcane fiber and forms a natural color, molded fiber, cook-in package that can withstand the rigors of cooking frozen and fresh meals.
These sugarcane fiber trays and bowls are compatible with both typical microwave and conventional oven cooking. The packaging maintains rigidity during and after cooking—and while it may temporarily stiffen during the blast freezing cycle, the sugarcane fiber trays will not become brittle.
The engineered surface is designed to deliver moisture, oil and grease resistance during cooking and eating, which helps maintain the package strength during all phases of use, preventing loss of food moisture and eliminating the concern of wicking through the package to surfaces beneath.
A family of films have been built for strong heat seals around the perimeter of the tray lip—preventing leakage prior to freezing and maintaining adhesion during cooking (if desired), while remaining easy to peel. They have formulated sealants for both hot roller and platen technologies. The combination of the membrane seal and engineered vapor barrier of the tray ensures product quality throughout the shelf life of both fresh and frozen products.
The manufacturing facility is powered by renewable biomass and solar energy, making it an efficient and environmentally sustainable manufacturing operation.
This packaging meets the cook-in food contact packaging requirements for 21CFR186.1673 (GRAS) and 21CFR176.170.