ConAgra Foods, Constar receive award for Hunt’s Ketchup bottle design, production
OMAHA, Neb. ConAgra Foods and Constar International have received the 2008 WorldStar Award from the World Packaging Organization for ConAgra Foods’ 46-ounce Hunt’s Ketchup bottle which is made using Constar’s DiamondClear PET technology, the companies announced Friday.
“At ConAgra Foods, we’re focused and committed to utilizing new and better packaging materials that are environmentally friendly and designed for better recyclability,” ConAgra’s VP of sustainability and channel development, Gail Tavill, said. “We’re proud to receive this prestigious WorldStar Award for our Hunt’s Ketchup bottle.”
ConAgra’s Hunt’s ketchup bottle has also been recognized with a “top sustainable packaging” AmeriStar Award in 2007 from the Institute of Packaging Professionals and a second-place AmeriStar Award in the food category.
Constar’s DiamondClear PET technology has helped ConAgra Foods cut the weight of its 46-ounce ketchup bottles by 12 percent, reducing packaging waste. The reduced-weight bottles also can be recycled.
ConAgra Foods has made a commitment to reducing food packaging waste. In August, the company started to use post-consumer recycled plastic to make frozen meal trays for its brands such as Banquet, Kid Cuisine and Healthy Choice. The company has said this will reduce new plastic waste in landfills by 8 million pounds per year.
Dr Pepper Snapple joins Stevia-sweetened beverage stampede
NEW YORK Fresh off news that its two biggest competitors plan to launch new diet beverages containing a new sugar alternative made from the plant Stevia, Dr Pepper Snapple Group announced Thursday it also plans to join Coke and Pepsi, and expects to launch a similar beverage product containing the new alternative sweetener.
On Wednesday, the Food and Drug Administration approved the use of Stevia-based sweeteners in foods and beverages.
The sweeteners, made from the leaves of a South American shrub, will provide natural alternatives to chemical sweeteners like Equal and Splenda.
Coke asks regulators in Australia, New Zealand to approve use of phytosterols
ATLANTA Coca-Cola South Pacific recently applied to Food Standards Australia New Zealand to add phytosterols at a level of 4.5 per liter to all fruit juice drinks with at least 20% juice. The application applied to both Australia and New Zealand, and Coke said it wants these drinks to target the over-40-year-old population, since data has shown phytosterol can lower cholesterol levels.
Scientific studies were included in the application, though FSANZ will be looking into a wider range of material. The European Food Safety Authority recently supported a submission for a plant sterol-based health claim from Unilever, saying, “Plant sterols have been shown to lower/reduce blood cholesterol. Blood cholesterol lowering may reduce the risk of coronary heart disease.” FSANZ stated one of its concerns that consumers may exceed the Acceptable Daily Intake, created by the Joint FAO/WHO Expert Committee on Food Additives, by consuming multiple products that contain phytosterol esters.
Currently, phytosterol esters from vegetable oils and non-esterified phyotsterols—derived from a tall-oil source—are permitted in oils spreads and margarines in Australia. And since November 2006, phytosterol esters have been permitted in breakfast cereals, low-fat milk and low-fat yogurt. Non-esterified phtosterols from vegetable oil have not yet been accepted.