With roughly one third of the food produced in the world (approximately 1.3 billion tonnes) being lost or wasted, the market demands innovative solutions that will prevent further food loss. In developing countries 40% of losses occur mainly at early stages of the food value chain due to faulty transportation and storage. Mondi (mondigroup.com) recently developed an innovative packaging solution that solves this problem for the watermelon supply chain and enhances product appearance at the point of sale.
At present, premium watermelons are sold in supermarkets in octabins, corrugated or plastic trays or “A” boxes. However, the Watermelon’s Dream project from Mondi offers a unique alternative to standard solutions with its unique rectangular shape and a window showing the product packed inside. Moreover, its folded mono-corrugated cardboard design is easy to assemble and stack during transportation thanks to its ergonomic structure. This saves transportation costs by allowing 50% more watermelons to be shipped in one truck.
Another benefit is end-user convenience; with the new design it is easier for consumers to carry their heavy watermelon home from the supermarket. Last, but not least, Watermelon Dream allows more branding opportunities thanks to a larger printing area and excellent product display. As a result, the new packaging for watermelons allows the product to stand out from the crowd as a premium offering with the ideal shape to be placed also directly in the shelves. The concept was successfully launched in Turkish supermarkets and is available for the global market.
Hasanali KOÇ, general manager at Antalya Seracılık, adds: “The new packaging from Mondi provided a smart pick-and-go solution which simplifies transportation and storage of watermelons, both for retailers and consumers, and still looks great on the shelf. We are delighted with the new functional design also because we managed to reduce the food waste in the supply chain by 13%.”
Fatos Adak, product innovation manager at Mondi Corrugated Packaging Turkey, comments: “The Watermelon’s Dream is an excellent example of Mondi’s capabilities to address market needs for convenience, differentiation at point of sale and sustainability. Mondi products touch the lives of millions of people every day, we therefore want our products to have a positive impact on society and the communities in which we operate.
“In light of the diverse packaging portfolio Mondi offers, we have identified, together with suppliers, customers, research institutes and experts from the Mondi Food Safety Laboratory, four areas of focus when designing smarter packaging solutions; reducing damage in transit/storage, extending shelf and product life, adapting packaging design to evolving socio-demographics and achieving packaging traceability for better inventory management. Each one of these elements is evident in The Watermelon’s Dream and we are very excited to bring this creative format to market.”
 SAVE FOOD: Global Initiative on Food loss and Waste Reduction, http://www.fao.org/save-food/resources/keyfindings/en/