"We are constantly developing new tools and adding at least five new tray profiles to our range every year. Our customers, who are major supermarket chains in the UK and worldwide, are always eager to introduce new shapes and designs to differentiate their products," says the company owner Stuart Smith.
Another reason for the continuous growth of Southern Cross Packaging is the brand owners' desire to switch from non-renewable materials such as plastic and aluminium to the renewable paperboard. The UK promoter of circular economy, WRAP, classifies the paperboard trays as Widely Recycled, on the understanding that the products are clearly labelled 'rinse before recycling'. This means that any of our trays can be recycled with paper waste, providing there is no food residue remaining in the container.
The majority of board used by Southern Cross Packaging comes from Stora Enso; it is the TrayformaTM by Stora Enso with a black or white PET coating that works in microwave or conventional oven. The trays are typically used in packaging chilled and frozen ready-meals but also in other applications. Unlike metal and plastic, the Trayforma board provides great opportunities for attractive graphic design and printing, and of course formability into various shapes and sizes.
The new year looks promising for Southern Cross Packaging, which has investments in new tray capacity ongoing and is currently working on a number of new product introductions by its major customers. "Recently we also tested the new Trayforma from BM4. It is very good. It is a stronger board that gives rigidity for the finished product, and provides nice print quality," Stuart Smith confirms.
TrayformaTM by Stora Enso, the board for folded and pressed food trays, has recently been upgraded to provide the best performance in converting to trays in various shapes and sizes. The recipe of the board has been optimized and especially its improved tear strength, burst strength and stretch allow for better formability.