As brands strive to engage with their consumers, it is vitally important for packaging designers to be able to visualize the environments within which the package is intended to be used by the consumer. There have been times when I have been seduced by the messaging on a pack only to be let down by the inability to tear it open or reclose it.

As a professional within the packaging fraternity, perhaps I pay far too much attention to such details. However, convenience is high on the mind of every consumer on the go. A closure is the gateway to your product and they are not a one-size-fits-all. The world of closures is just as diverse as the number of millet varieties which have come into distribution in recent times. A well-made pouch is like the proverbial ‘labour of love’ and a closure that is sealed to perfection is the functional heart of the reclosable pack. Each product has its own set of challenges and correspondingly there is a closure which rises up to each of these challenges. We will go over a range of food based applications based on today’s evolving times and closures that have been uniquely designed to address them.

Roasted Cashewnut Pouches

Granular and Powder Products such as spice mixes, soups and seasonings, tea, coffee, protein powders, savoury snacks and many other products tend to get trapped in between the zipper profiles. This prevents the zipper from reclosing after use and can result in loss of organoleptic properties, moisture seeping into the pack which can cause agglomeration of the product or worse still decay or mould build up within the pack.

Particle resistant zippers effectively resist clogging of the zipper profile by the granular / powder product for smooth and clean zipper performance and secure tight seals to lock in product contents and prevent spillage. Particle resistant zippers are available as conventional Press to Close Zippers as well as Slide to Close Zippers, adding tools for creative expression in the hands of package designers.

Dry Fruits and Nuts are growing in popularity as snack substitutes between meals. Their consumption has increased by 22%, according to The Statistical Year Book 2020-21 brought out by INC (International Nut & Dried Fruit during COVID years, due to an overall shift towards healthier eating. Almonds, Pine nuts, Walnuts and the more exotic Pecan Nuts and Brazil Nuts are rich in oils and trace nutrients. These constituents are sensitive to moisture and oxygen which can alter the colour, flavour, aroma and texture of the nuts. High quality Double Lock Airtight zippers can help retain product freshness over multiple uses, thus enhancing consumer experience, yet allowing multi-use packs to be carried around safely. This is also a more sustainable option, reducing the packaging required when compared with single portion packs.

Just as material structures change in response to expected product performance such as 2 layer basic PET/PE laminates to 4 Layer high barrier laminates with multiple layers of PET, foil and PE, similarly, the appropriate closure is an important aspect of the overall package and a key part of the consumer experience. Package designers need to be aware of the breadth of solutions in the market and be ready to challenge the status quo, in order to make the pack more convenient, hermetic, functional, aesthetically appealing and additionally compatible with the overall thrust in the industry for sustainable packaging. In the future, we intend to focus on additional use cases for specialty closures and explore the drivers and trends in the flexible packaging industry.

About the Author:
Vikram Fotedar
Chief Executive Officer, Fotedar Engineering Services

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Author

An editor by day & dreamer at night; passionately involved with both print and digital media; Pet lover; Solo traveller.

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