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Food Safety: vious in their own operations; otherwise they wouldn't be using them. Reusable Plastic Containers vs. corrugated packaging (Part 2 of 2) "It's all about how boxes are stacked on a pallet and put on the truck, so you must consider how much you can get into an area. Because RPCs are stronger, more stable, rigid and often interconnecting, shippers can often build taller, stronger palates with RPCs over corrugated. Cardboard boxes slant and become unstable with height. So with transportation efficiencies, you're shipping more products in RPCs than in corrugated, making it better financially." By Stephanie DeCamp ast month, Commissary Insider wrote an article about the advantages of using corrugated packaging (cardboard) over reusable plastic containers (RPCs) for shipping your product, in regard to both cost and sanitation. This month we spoke with Tim Debus, president and CEO of the Reusable Packaging Association, who presents the other side of this issue and outlines the advantages of using RPCs in light of the same. L First and foremost comes food safety, and the study on sanitation sponsored by the Corrugated Packaging Alliance (that Part 1 of this story centered around) has propagated an issue where there is none, Debus says. Because there has never been a case of foodborne illness resulting from RPCs, nor cardboard, there is no need for a commissary to make a choice between the two packaging methods based upon sanitation alone. "The corrugated manufacturing process kills bacteria," he says. "The RPC cleaning and sanitization process does too." The process Debus is referring to is found in the RPA Guidelines and Best Practices for the Safe Use of Returnable Containers in Food Supply Chains, released eight months prior to the November 2015 CPA study that argued cardboard's superiority in regard to preventing foodborne illness. However, that superiority in sanitation was based upon lab settings, he says, and not realworld practice. And while cardboard may be cheaper to buy, Debus argues that the advantages largely lie within the RPC camp, and over the long haul, RPCs save more money. In regard to spoilage and shrink, Debus says that by design RPCs outperform cardboard boxes, which can shift according to weight and stacking, exposing unintended holes in corners and between flaps. RPCs, however, are designed with airflow, temperature regulation and ventilation control in mind. "That's why many have converted to us," he says. "The benefits have become ob- The greatest reasons to employ RPCs, Debus says, include "superior product protection, lower supply chain costs, and reduced environmental footprint. In food applications, particularly with perishable food items, RPCs deliver higher-quality and fresher foods through improved product protection and temperature management; they generate efficiencies in supply chains from better cube and unit load distribution and labor savings; and reduce the environmental impact by eliminating waste and reducing greenhouse gas emissions and energy use." RPCs in some form or another have been used for generations. From milk crates to bread trays and harvest bins, "billions of RPCs are used each year to pack and ship food just in North America alone," he says. "An analysis of the commissary packaging process, warehouse operation, transportation network, and customer receipt practices can uncover many opportunities where RPCs will outperform cardboard shipping boxes. For a commissary business, ensuring the quality and freshness of foods is essential, and RPCs can offer better ventilation, airflow and temperature control to preserve the cold chain and increase the shelf life of perishable food items." While corrugated packaging may be recycled over 90 percent of the time, and manufactured using over 50 percent of recycled material, Debus says that still doesn't change the fact that it is wastegenerating and not waste-preventing. "Cardboard is single-use or one-way packaging that is 'thrown away' after PHOTO: SOSLAND 6 * AUGUST 2016 * commissary INSIDER

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of instore - August 2016

instore - August 2016
Editor's note - Allergens: A new way to connect
Table of Contents
News - On our radar
Spotlight - By the numbers: Deli sandwiches
Cover story - Allergen awareness
Specialty insights - Consider: Dips and spreads
Commissary Insider - August 2016
Feature: Dealing with allergens
Food Safety: Reusable Plastic Containers vs. corrugated packaging (Part 2 of 2)
Product Spotlight: Sandwich wraps — making a comeback?
Packaging: Container innovations are clearly in your favor
Operations and logistics: Less-than-truckload shipping
Feature - Changing perceptions
Product knowledge - Need to know: Dessert cakes
Equipment & packaging - Latest Innovation: Combination ovens
Merchandising - On Display: Tailgating season
Product Trends - First to Market
Product Showcase
Ad Index

instore - August 2016