How a Brazilian packaging producer is improving the way food gets to the table

Mar 04, 2019 | Domenico Macchia, JR., Videplast

To reduce food waste, improve food distribution and lower the environmental impact, the world needs packages that provide better protection at a lower cost with less materials and the ability to recycle.


Our goal at Videplast is simple: collaborate to bring food from farm to table as affordably and as sustainably as possible – whether it is meat, produce or staples like rice, beans, sugar and flour.

When we opened our doors more than 30 years ago, we manufactured low-cost plastic bags out of recyclable polyethylene plastic for the transport of fruit and other goods from street fairs and local grocers to homes in Brazil. Our neighbor happened to be a major chicken and pork processor. Over time we noticed they were using many bags to package their meats, and we were sure we could improve their approach. We quickly invested in new equipment that delivered an application of recyclable polyethylene meeting the meat processor’s packaging requirements of quality and freshness. Over the coming decades, we continued to challenge ourselves. How can we improve food packaging?

We challenged ourselves and made a commitment to become one of the top 10 packaging converters in Brazil and the foremost in the animal protein industry. Continually striving to design the best packaging with the lowest impact on the environment. Using a single material whenever possible so that the packaging is easy to recycle. We developed an analysis tool to consider the creation to end-of-life environmental impact of the package and contents.

Since making this commitment, we have invested in state-of-the-art equipment. We have also sought to collaborate more. We work with suppliers like Dow to develop packages. For example our VP 30, which meets and, in some cases, exceeds, requirements for the niche market of rice packaging – a market that had not shown any significant application advancements in more than 10 years. 

Videplast VP-30 rice bag

VP 30 packaging is now used by rice packagers in the largest rice producing and processing region of Brazil. Brand owners quickly recognized the benefits provided by the new package that reduces material use and improves performance. Thickness is reduced by 30% over alternatives, while improving the gloss, mechanical resistance, abrasion resistance and the total cost by reducing breakage and damage during transportation and stocking shelves in supermarkets. It provides brand owners with an attractive, better performing package.

We are now applying the same concept to new packages for sugar, flour and beans, which represent other large volume staples produced in Brazil.  To reduce food waste, improve food distribution and lower the environmental impact, the world needs packages that provide better protection at a lower cost with less materials and the ability to recycle. We’re ready to take on these new challenges with our partners.

 


Going big: Now is the time for a bold, durable strategy for climate protection

 

Solar panels with windmills in the background

Jan 21, 2021 | Jim Fitterling

Now is the time to do what is necessary.

As President Joe Biden took office yesterday, our nation faces critical and urgent issues: a global pandemic, extraordinary economic challenges and political unrest following the siege on the U.S. Capitol.

Yet, as one of his first acts in office, the President rejoined the Paris Agreement. While the U.S. has made substantial progress on CO2 emissions, this move signals to the rest of the world that the United States will once again engage and collaborate in reducing carbon emissions to stave off the worst impacts of climate change. Its message also should be a reminder that, while our nation faces the immediate task of recovery, we must work for transformative change. Now is the time to act – act boldly, to move our nation toward a net-zero economy.