The COVID-19 pandemic had a huge impact on supply chain and distribution channels. One of the developments that seems to be here to stay is new food consumption pattern. How much perishable produce did we buy online before? And now? Nowadays we couldn’t make it without quality isothermal packaging…
Companies involved in the food distribution and catering sectors are facing a new challenge: to maintain a quality service and ensure an unbroken cold chain for perishable food in spite of a much larger market volume than before. One of the biggest challenges lies in the packaging for food home deliveries.
The takeaway boom
Ordering food online became our daily routine, everything is available per home delivery now, weekly food shopping from e-supermarkets, recipe boxes, ready-to-eat meals etc. The fact is that any business model related to e-commerce has seen an abrupt change; and in the food sector, even more so.
This has been even more noticeable in Spain than in other markets. While in other countries around us, the online purchase of food and perishable products was already well established, the Spanish consumer was still quite reticent. Today, this timid trend in the pre-pandemic is consolidated. And it seems to berise.
Of course, one of the most critical aspects in this area is cold transport (or hot when it comes to ready-to-eat food). It is clear to caterers, fresh produce suppliers and distribution companies that isothermal packaging is not an option, but it can also be an opportunity.
For each option, there is a solution
In times of transformation, a small difference can become a big comparative advantage. Packaging is a textbook example: protection needs have been combined with presentation needs for years; now, we can opt for the three-in-one: efficient packaging for cold transport and to give the best image of our brand.
So what is the ideal insulated packaging? There is only one answer, of course: it depends on the product. Isothermal containers are not the same for fresh food as for frozen products; moving large volumes is not the same as working in retail; the difference between large-scale distribution and last-mile delivery is abysmal.
What we can say is that there are a handful of features that add value to our temperature-controlled packaging, whatever it is. Take note:
- It goes without saying that it must maintain the cold chain, but if the packaging is easy to use, takes up little space and can be reused, our business will notice.
- The packaging is the first thing the customer sees of our product when it arrives in their hands. It is therefore advisable to take great care of it and personalise it as much as possible.
- As a matter of brand image, but above all for corporate social responsibility, let‘s opt forenvironmentally friendly(and, where possible, reusable)packaging.