Uncertainty about the economic crisis is of great concern to all. Insecure consumers are worrying about their jobs, cutting back on their spending and assembling and eating more meals at home. As a result, frozen foods are thriving. Old-fashioned skills such as cooking at home are increasingly popular.
At the same time, consumers want to break out of their everyday dinner routine and will continue to seek convenient great-tasting, restaurant quality meals easily to be prepared at home. Fortunately studies show that sustainability and ‘greenness’ are still at the top of the list of most consumers.
Whole Foods Market introduced its partly-prepared cakes, pastries and pizzas in a new concept packaging, which the consumer only needs to put in the (microwave)oven to start baking. The concept offers great convenience with time saved shopping for individual ingredients, preparation, and clearing-up.
This new 100 percent renewable content baking tray and total system might change bakery processes in a more sustainable way. Bakery practice is to bake its products in (disposable) metal trays and transfer the goods into a separate packaging for in store sales. Ultimately that packaging would be discarded as waste by the consumer. The (pre-)baked products now stay in the new dual-ovenable, microwaveable trays all the way through to the consumer, eliminating (aluminium) baking tray disposal and the need for a sales packaging.
The exceptional thing with this bakeware is that the material used isn’t converted from starch into plastic, but instead baked, similarly to the process of making bread, waffles or ice cream cones. Biosphere Industries successfully optimized this ‘ice cream cone baking’ technology to manufacture rigid packaging products that perform unlike anything else on earth. This clean, advanced, two-step “’ice cream cone-baking” technology involves no harsh chemicals or plastics. Steam is the only by-product of the minimal-waste manufacturing process. The base material is engineered to be made primarily of starches such as tapioca, potatoes and a smaller percentage of grass fibre and other raw materials harvested yearly, Biosphere Industries says.
The Renew-a-Pak’s product line is readily naturally compostable and garbage disposal safe. Renew-a-Pak products biodegrade completely on their own in 40 days outdoors (depending on precipitation conditions), or 10 days in a commercial compost environment while enjoying an indoor shelf life of many years. Moisture is a factor in the degradation of the product. For towns and cities without composting facilities, Renew-a-Pak biodegradable packaging materials may also be disposed of in the normal paper recycling streams.
The Renew-a-Pak packaging product line, designed for dual-ovenability, microwaveability, maintains structural rigidity in freezing temperatures and extreme heat up to 420ºF (215ºC), while the bakeware stays cool to the touch, reducing the threat of burnt hands. Custom engineered packaging shapes and sizes may be infused with signature colours and custom aromas.
The Renew-a-Pak is certified by the Biodegradable Products Institute.