VICTORIA, Narre Warren North, NOVEMBER 2021: As world leaders depart Glasgow, Scotland following the United Nations Climate Change Conference, also known at the COP26, Australian fresh food producers start to roll out new packaging solutions to remove a need for single use plastics in the fresh fruit and vegetable sections of supermarkets across the country.
Montague, one of Australia’s largest fruit growers is dedicated to improving all facets of the entire end-to-end grow and supply process. Montague is working collaboratively with the industry, retailers and consumers to improve the environmental footprint, not only for its own produce but to drive change in the industry. “As leaders in fruit growing, we are leading by example through embedding sustainability in every aspect of the business with a long-term view that there are always more improvements to be made. The cost involved to make positive change is significant, so we are striving to find the most cost-efficient solutions however some changes have come at a price.” Scott Montague, Managing Director explained.
One possible alternate packing option is a new fibre board JASA punnet, which is being trialled for JAZZ™ apples, exclusively packed and sold by Montague. The ten-week consumer facing trial of the new JASA packaging will be found in select IGA, Coles and Woolworths stores from now. The new cardboard JASA sleever is one option that may replace single use plastic punnets and wrappers in the quest to reinvent fruit packaging and reduce plastic waste. The new JASA sleever pack will be produced using sustainable cardboard sourced in Australia from Visyboard. The packaging cost is 30 per cent higher than the current plastic option but is made from renewable resources and it fully recyclable. The extra cost is significant on low margin fresh produce therefore a small increase (20 cents per 1kg pre-pack) will be passed on to help continue with this project.
“This innovative packaging option will lead the industry towards more sustainable packaging solutions,” said Scott Montague. “While this JASA sleever is initially a trial, we want to see how consumers respond so the industry can forge ahead with the development of more sustainable packaging across all commodity and speciality apples. Consumers only need to pay an additional 20 cents on JAZZ™ pre-pack apples for this trial to be successful. This will set us on a path to a more sustainable packaging future,” he concluded.
European countries are showing a commitment to new fruit packaging solutions with French laws banning single use plastic packaging for fruits and vegetables starting from 2022. Australian producers are leading the way with new packaging solutions being introduced industry-wide on a range of different products. In addition, the industry is also working with Government to improve plastic recycling capacity in Australia.
In Australia the new fibre board packaging will be on JAZZ™ apple packs for a ten-week trial in select Coles stores across Metro Melbourne, Woolworths stores in Metro Sydney and select IGA stores in Brisbane.
Supermarket trial of new plastic free retail packaging for JAZZ™ pre packed apples
Ten-weeks from October 2021 until January 2022
Coles stores across Metro Melbourne
Woolworths stores in Metro Sydney
Select IGA stores in Brisbane
Montague is a family-owned business who have been growing fruit for three generations. Founded by William (Bill) Montague (OAM) in 1948 the company is now operated by his family. In 2020 Montague activities include fruit growing, production and packing, food sales and marketing and the provision of storage and logistics services to the fresh produce industry. The Montague team and their network of national and global horticulture partners are dedicated to innovation in the horticulture industry and educating consumers about the world of fresh produce.
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M + 61 410 588 196
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Chief Innovation Officer, Montague
M + 61 408 750 944
E [email protected]