By Jaan Koel
Food packaging companies have been under a lot of pressure to reduce waste through reduction and recycling, increase performance, while ensuring food safety. This demand has largely been driven not only by the public at large, but also by food manufacturers and retailers—a packaging company’s primary and secondary customers.
Pressures on all three fronts have caused these companies to develop new materials, processes, and additives, such as antioxidants and stabilizers, lubricants, anti-static and anti-blocking agents, and other things. But are they safe? The best insurance is complying with a GFSI-based packaging certification standard, such as IFS PACsecure, BRC, FSSM, and others, through a rigorous third-party audit.
But how effective are they? None of these packaging certification standards has been measured yet, but what’s interesting is that they’re identical in many ways to others that have. For instance, according to recent university studies, food manufacturers with GFSI-based food certification standards are showing marked advancements in business value and across the food safety spectrum. One of the most recent ones was conducted by the University of Rostock in Germany and commissioned by the creators of the IFS Food Standard. Packaging is a crucial part of the value chain, and we’re raising the bar to ensure that we do our part in getting food onto the kitchen table that’s always safe. “Respondents reported an average 17% reduction in food recalls, 27% reduction in customer claims and complaints related to food safety and food quality; 51% reduction in regulatory issues; and 40% reduction in product error and defect rates,” says IFS Americas Director of Marketing and Business Development, George Gansner.