Graham Packaging Company, L.P., has introduced the first clear PET (polyethylene terephthalate) multilayer plastic jar with a wide-mouth finish and barrier properties suitable for hot-packed food products such as pasta sauces, salsas, fruits, and other popular hot-fill products. Products such as these previously were available only in glass because of the need to prevent oxygen ingress. The new container also works well in protecting dry-packed or cold-processed products that are oxygen sensitive.
The market potential of our multilayer container is spurred by consumer desire for clear, light-weight, non-breakable packaging and also by the opportunity for manufacturing and distribution savings, said Paul Bailie, vice president and business manager for food packaging at Graham Packaging. Our multilayer design allows us to provide the lightest-weight jar that enables the longest shelf life. The container increases shelf life beyond 12 months, up to18 months with certain products.
The package combines two proprietary technologies: Graham Packaging's SurShotTM multilayer technology and the company's jar blow-molding technology, both employed in the packaging industry for more than 10 years. Bailie said the marriage of these two technologies yields long shelf life and good aesthetics at an affordable cost. The containers can be designed in most configurations, including round, square, rectangular, and specialty shapes, with wide-mouth finishes up to 82 millimeters. The PET jars can be hot filled in a temperature range of 195-205 degrees Fahrenheit.
The five-layer container ranks high in sustainability. A filler could realize an 87 percent weight reduction on an order of 50 million jars annually compared to glass. That would eliminate the equivalent of 962 truckloads per year at an annual savings of close to $700,000. The container includes post-consumer and post-industrial recycled materials, and the oxygen barrier material can be separated from the PET in the recycling process and taken out of the recycling stream. The SurShotTM multilayer barrier system has been recognized as recyclable by PET Container Recycling Europe (PETCORE).