2015 PMA Impact Awards Finalists, Pt. 1
- by Jordan Okumura
ATLANTA, GA - With PMA less than a week away, AndNowUKnow wanted to take the time to highlight each of the 20 products nominated for PMA’s coveted Impact awards this year. Winners will be announced from the 20 finalists this weekend at Fresh Summit in Atlanta, GA. Check out our first 10 featured finalists below.
Mann Packing’s Culinary Cuts®
Some of Mann Packing’s signature vegetables, sweet potatoes, and butternut squash have a new look and unique way of cutting with the Mann’s Culinary Cuts® line. Including distinctive shapes like Sweet Potato Ribbons and Butternut Squash Zig Zags, the vegetables are washed and ready to cook. Versatile enough for multiple uses like as salads, stir-frys, soups, and casseroles, all Mann’s Culinary Cuts® are natural, preservative free, and gluten free.
“The company spent over two years developing the Culinary Cuts product line through extensive consumer research, an isolated test market with two major retailers, professional recipe development and online research,” the company says. “Mann’s Culinary Cuts® inspire creativity in cooking. This product line encourages the everyday home cook who’s looking for new ideas for dinner and creative ways to escape their “recipe ruts” with fun, attractive and clever shaped vegetables.”
AJ Trucco Inc.’s KiwiStar Organic Kiwifruit Pouch
This 1 lb. pouch of KiwiStar organic kiwifruit is made of recyclable plastic and seeks to use up to 65% less material than a clamshell. It highlights the antioxidants and Vitamin C content in kiwifruit and three easy steps to eat kiwifruit.
“We decided to design this pouch because we were looking to create an eye-catching and earth friendly packaging option for our organic kiwifruit,” the company explains. "We also wanted to educate consumers on the health benefits of kiwifruit and highlight how simple kiwifruit is to eat to the consumer.”
Alsum Farms & Produce, Inc.’s 12 oz. Fast & Fresh! Microwave-Ready Potatoes with Olive Oil & Seasoning
Alsum Farms’ Fast & Fresh! Microwave-Ready Creamer and Fingerling Potatoes come in a pre-packaged steam tray with spice and olive oil packets. These fresh potatoes can go from the microwave to the dinner table in 6 minutes or less.
“Alsum’s vision is to provide the consumer with a ready-to-serve healthy potato offering,” writes the company. “By utilizing the U.S. Potato Board’s market trends data, the 12 oz. Microwave-Ready Potatoes with Olive Oil & Seasoning are part of the growing trends for fresh foods fast.”
Botanical Food Company Inc./Gourmet Garden’s Gourmet Garden Lightly Dried Herbs & Spices
Gourmet Garden has added a new offering for busy cooks—Lightly Dried herbs & spices. Offered in a prep-bowl package, the click n’ stack bowls fit together for easy storage or taking out of the fridge. The bowl can fit in the palm of your hand while the concave inside allows easy access with a spoon or fingertips, making it easy to sprinkle onto a meal.
“We conducted 5 years of consumer and trade research across the globe with surveys, focus groups and home-user tests. It uncovered a latent consumer desire to be more experimental with herbs & spices and feel like a chef at home,” says Gourmet Garden. “They are recyclable and reusable which sits well with consumer trends desiring more sustainable packaging.”
SUNSET®’s Peel and Reseal Eco Flavor Bowl
SUNSET®’s peel and reseal Eco Flavor Bowl™ is a new sustainable packaging solution that uses a clear plastic bowl, heat-sealed with a high-graphic, peelable film that can be resealed. The Eco Flavor Bowls are packed in specially branded eco-friendly boxes that double as displays, offering a complete packaging system. Instead of a traditional label design, the company uses a multilayer film, which allows the consumer to reseal the package.
“At SUNSET®, we encourage healthy eating habits. With the peel and reseal Eco Flavor Bowl™, tomatoes can be washed and set out in the same sleek bowl to encourage snacking throughout the day or used as a quick solution to entertaining,” SUNSET® says. “The bowl can be resealed until further use. Some of SUNSET®’s offerings allow the proper storage of the product is the portion is unable to be consumed in one application. We provide optimal storage in the packaging to ensure extended shelf life.”
Earthbound Farm’s Organic Flavor Blends (Spicy Spinach & Sweet Kale)
Earthbound Farm introduced new Organic Flavor Blends this year—the Spicy Spinach & Sweet Kale blends. The first marrying organic mild and meaty baby spinach with organic nutty and peppery baby Asian mustard greens, while the second blends organic earthy and slightly bitter baby kale with organic sweet and silky butter lettuce leaves.
“If it doesn’t taste good, the consumer won’t be coming back for more. Today, what people deem as tasty and are willing to try is broader and more diverse than ever before. According to market researcher Mintel, 57% of Americans consider themselves adventurous eaters and 82% are open to trying new flavors”
Fresh Solutions Network’s Side Delights® Roastables
New Side Delights® Roastables are petite potatoes seasoned with Montana Mex seasoned salts to deliver a burst of flavor in its own roasting tray. Available in Rad Little Reds, Awesome Little Yellows, and a Combo Pack with both Red & Yellow potatoes, the 1 lb. metal tray is specially designed for oven roasting or grilling.
“It's about convenience! The Metal tray is the cooking vehicle for either grill or oven and the tray size provides just enough room to add oil to coat potatoes before roasting. The tray is sturdy enough to serve from, and after potatoes are eaten, the tray could be washed and re-used or recycled without any clean-up required in the kitchen,” Fresh Solutions told PMA in its submission.
Maglio Produce’s readyripe Watermelon Pouch
The readyripe Watermelon solution-a sliced watermelon in a patented pouch that can extend shelf life up to 11 days, compared to 2 days for the overwrap method. The readyripe watermelon pouch solution maintains the sweetness, firmness, and taste throughout the company says, and no preservatives are used.
“We believed there was an emerging market need and that we had the innovation and capability to solve this. Specifically, there is growing demand for high quality and conveniently packaged sliced watermelon,” Maglio explained. “This design innovation can also extend to other types of cut melons. Based on our industry expertise, we were convinced we could increase shelf life, enhance the food safety characteristics and improve consumer convenience.”
Mucci Farms’ Cutecumbers - Flow-Wrap Re-sealable Tray
The new Cutecumbers clear tray is flexible, clear, re-sealable, and plastic with high-graphic pre-printing.This recyclable tray with re-sealable technology offers the consumer the flexibility for continued use and storage. Using flow wrap made from Modified Atmosphere Plastic (MAP), the Flow-Wrap Re-sealable Tray provides strong breathability.
“The focus is on healthy snacks in an easy and consumer friendly package. The trays are great for merchandising and easy to stack for retail displays,” says Mucci. “We wanted to create a new look that offered increased convenience for consumers, with clear visibility of product and no ribbing of plastic tray. This is part of Mucci’s commitment to environmental sustainability.”
Mucci Farms’ Prova, Top Seal Tray
Mucci Farms’ Prova, Top Seal Tray is a clear, smooth container with an ultra-clear top-seal plastic. The top-seal allows for high impact graphics to feature easy-to-prepare recipe imagery. Mucci’s top-seal film uses 25-30% less plastic than traditional clamshells, and is easy to peel and open.
“Our team was conscious of creating a package that offered clear visibility of the product,” adds Mucci about the Proca Top Seal Tray. “Our tray was created with little to no ribbing of the plastic, as this package uses 25-30% less plastic than traditional produce clamshells.”
Mucci has another 5 products in the running for awards as well, so keep watching for more from the company in part two.
Stay tuned to AndNowUKnow later this week to see the other 10 PMA Impact Award Finalists.