The Dairy Difference: Flexible Packaging for Dairy Products

16 Apr2019

Lining the shelves of the grocery aisles for years, and long before consumers were inundated with a plethora of packaged food options, dairy products were available and a consumer favorite.

Today, the market is filled with more than mere bricks of cheese, cups of yogurt and jugs of milk. Grass-fed milk and cheeses, full-fat organic yogurts, goat and sheep milk, sippable yogurts for adults and children alike, and specialty products like kefir are finding their way into the consumer’s grocery basket. Even with the recent spike in dairy-alternatives like nut milk, soy-based cheese, and coconut yogurt, the dairy industry continues to see innovative products enter the market.

Regardless of the delivery method, dairy product packaging must keep the product fresh, while remaining convenient and attractive for the consumer. And flexible packaging for dairy is no different. Whether you’re looking to provide consumers with on-the-go packaged snacks like string cheese, or a resealable yogurt pouch, there are three key components to consider when developing your dairy flexible packaging.

On-The-Go Dairy Packaging Options Are a Must

Consumers with busy lifestyles crave easy, on-the-go options. And because more consumers are snacking all throughout the day, Mintel reports that snacking may represent the most substantial opportunity to increase cheese consumption with consumers, especially young adults. Packaging that offers single-serve and on-the-go use could help spur growth in sales.

For single-serve snacks like string cheese, cheese snack packs, and drinkable yogurts, ease of carrying is key for snacking on dairy on the go. Opt for lightweight films and pouches that are easy to open, easy to eat and easy to dispose of. For multi-use cheese products, whether it’s sliced, shredded, or cubed, consider packaging cheese in reclosable packaging that allows the package to be open and closed repeatedly while keeping the seal strong enough for multiple uses.

Either way, be sure that your pouch or bag is easy to open, reclose and is portable for that picnic, party or lunch. Offer your dairy, cheese and yogurt offerings in packaging that meets consumers where they are (in and out of the home).

Reseal Options Aid in Freshness

When creating cheese packaging that will be used over and over again, there is another important consideration. Because, whichever way you slice it, the BEST multi-use cheese package offers consumers reseal technology to maximize freshness. Reclosability in cheese packaging is more than just a consumer convenience option, it offers an increase in shelf life and a reduction in food waste.

Reclosable packaging changes the life of the product after it has been opened. The biggest danger for cheese is the refrigerator itself. The refrigerator helps to prevent bacteria and mold growth, but at the same time can dry out the cheese if not packaged properly. Reclosable packaging protects the cheese from drying out by keeping oxygen out to keep the product fresher, for longer. This prolongs the amount of time the food is ideal for consumption, resulting in less that gets thrown away by the consumer. Films today work hard to keep a tight seal and keep oxygen out, all to increase shelf life.

Aside from ensuring freshness, the truth is that consumers prefer the ease of use of reclosable packaging, and the convenience of not needing to use a second container, such as a plastic bag or storage ware, to hold the food once it’s opened. They also enjoy the knowledge that the food will stay fresh, even as they take it on the go. Consumers seem to want it all, including convenience and freshness, and they want their dairy to be healthy.

Consumers Want Clean Label Packaging

Packaging that delivers convenience and keeps the products inside fresh is non-negotiable. But what about the message being delivered on the package itself?

More and more consumers are seeking out clean products with clean labeling — i.e. labels that clearly display minimally processed, simple ingredients with fewer added ingredients like sugar, food dyes, and preservatives. Mintel reports that “the concept of clean label has been used by the food industry for many years, but clean-related terms have now emerged as part of consumers’ vocabulary as a new way to say ‘healthy.’” And the dairy products industry is no exception.

As new diets and eating plans unroll each year touting the next big way to lose weight and increase overall health, cheese and yogurt packaging that get on board with clean labeling will quickly capture consumers looking for a natural, healthy snack. Couple that with packaging that keeps the product fresh, portable and reclosable and your package is sure to boost sales.

In summary, creating that perfect cheese or yogurt package is simple when you follow three key guidelines: Keep the product and packaging fresh, convenient and clean. And you can do all that by utilizing digital printing technology on flexible packaging. Call us today for a free quote and to learn how we can partner with you to create a superior dairy package.