woman with mask on grocery shopping

Consumer Packaging Preferences Point Manufacturers to Aseptic Options

From bottled water to soft drinks, single-serve plastic beverage containers are being given another look by consumers in the beverage category. Explore how consumer preferences for convenient packaging that also delivers on food safety and shelf life may pave the way for expansion in aseptic beverage manufacturing.

Understanding Packaging Preferences of Today’s Consumers

The food and beverage industry has been impacted in a variety of ways as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, not least by shifts in consumer preferences. Management consulting firm McKinsey and Company recently set out to learn specifically what’s important to consumers when it comes to food and beverage packaging.

According to McKinsey’s survey results, the COVID-19 situation has made consumers more sensitive to the importance of hygiene/food safety in packaging materials. Across the ten countries sampled (spanning North and South America to Europe and Asia), hygiene/food safety came out on top with the highest number of respondents indicating its importance in product packaging as very strong or extremely.1 The second most highly cited factor in all countries was shelf life.2

In the U.S., the next most cited factors in product packaging after hygiene/food safety (at 77%) and shelf life (at 67%) were ease of use (61%), and durability and label information (tied at 59%).3 Environmental impact of the product packaging came in last (at 43%), surprising researchers.4 In fact, environmental impact ranked in the bottom two for eight of the ten countries surveyed, indicating the greater importance to consumers of more immediate, practical concerns.5

woman putting juice in fridge

Aseptic Beverage Manufacturing Addresses Consumer Needs

These strong consumer preferences for product packaging that delivers on hygiene/food safety, shelf life, ease of use, and durability indicate a key opportunity for companies to tap into the benefits of aseptic beverage manufacturing. Aseptic beverage manufacturing offers a unique, state-of-the-art process that eliminates both pathogens and spoilage organisms to achieve a commercially shelf-safe product. This is food technology at its best and a food safety story worth sharing with consumers.

Besides peace of mind, aseptic beverage processing allows companies to create beverages that are shelf stable and have a long shelf life, meeting the needs of today’s consumers. Not only does the shelf stability provide consumers with convenience that works for the lunch box or gym bag, but the long shelf life also lets consumers stock up without worry if they wish.

Aseptic beverage manufacturing also checks the boxes for ease of use and durability. While today’s aseptic beverages come in an assortment of packaging materials, shapes, and sizes, single-serve recyclable bottles are the rising star in this category. Single-serve aseptic bottles are especially popular for health and wellness beverages, protein juice smoothies, and high and low acid juices. Additional benefits of aseptic processing include excellent flavor and nutrient retention compared with hot-fill processing and a preservative-free option to cold filling.

Milk nuts and grains on a table

Glanbia Nutritionals’ Aseptic Beverage Manufacturing Services

The recent shifts in consumers’ preferences and purchasing behaviors around foods and beverages make now the perfect time for companies to reassess how they’re meeting consumers’ needs. Glanbia Nutritionals' aseptic beverage manufacturing services may be just the solution to ensure your product line is relevant and works for today’s consumers.

We can help you bring to market safe, flavorful, and nutritious beverages, without the need for preservatives or refrigeration. Whether it’s new product ideas, new flavors, or new bottle shapes, we can help you create beverages that make customers take notice, and that help you become a market leader. Collaborate with us to develop the beverages your consumers are looking for.


References

1-5. Feber, D., Granskog, A., Lingqvist, O., & Nordigarden, D. (2020). Sustainability in packaging: Inside the minds of US consumers. Retrieved from https://www.mckinsey.com/industries/paper-forest-products-and-packaging/our-insights/sustainability-in-packaging-inside-the-minds-of-us-consumers.

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