Mushroom packaging has been pretty standard for many years: a plastic punnet wrapped in clingfilm with a label on the top. This not the most practical of packaging as the film does not stick and we end up with mushrooms all over the shopping bag.
“Mushroom have a unique respiration and this creates moisture which is the one thing you do not want inside the pack,” explains James Meers from Gs Fresh. “There have been so many innovations in fresh produce packaging in the last few years, so why not for mushrooms?”
James compares the current packaging with wearing a shell suit: It was acceptable, even a good idea in the 80’s but thankfully we have moved on – mushroom packaging hadn’t until now.
Gs has just launched an innovative new flow wrap pack which allows the mushrooms to respire without moisture collecting in the pack.
“I believe this is biggest innovation in mushroom packing for 50 years. It is a bespoke dual respiration film using some exciting technology which also adds shelf life to the product”
According to James in the traditional mushroom pack the punnet acted to hold the clingfilm in place as well as carry the mushrooms through the supply chain. “The options now available are wide open as the flow wrap is more flexible than cling film could ever be, this opens up all sorts of new opportunities to move away from heavy plastic punnets towards more sustainable materials such as pulp and cardboard containers.”
“Kantar figures show that in the next three years 350 million plastic punnets and paper labels could be replaced in the UK mushroom industry by moving into pre-printed flow wrap and alternative containers – getting the right punnet will be a challenge but one the industry can be excited about finally.”
The new flow wrap has had a very positive response from consumers who are more aware than ever of reducing plastic packaging.