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Cool Packaging: 2011 PMA Impact Award Winners

Cool Packaging: 2011 PMA Impact Award Winners

The winners of this year’s 2011 produce packaging Impact Award make some interesting moves with their designs—including bringing attention to produce health benefits, and making fruit and vegetables easy to tote along and cook.

One winner, Monterey Mushroom’s “Sustainable Packaging” does a good job of looking subtly and attractively sustainable with brown cardboard. The packaging also calls attention to the product's specific health attributes.

First off, the side of the container says “Super food” in a big font you can’t miss. It’s smart to point this out. This morning in “Fresh Voices on a Changing World” PMA President and CEO Bryan Silbermann said fruit and vegetables labeled “super foods” have been selling exponentially which shows the need to market to a new generation of consumer. And, for a recent SN produce packaging story, Mike Krage, director of sales and merchandising for produce and floral at Sunflower, told me this word resonates with his shoppers.

The side of the packaging also lists that the mushroom product is locally grown nationwide, has 100% of daily Vitamin D requirements, has B vitamins and antioxidents, and is low calorie, low sodium, low cholesterol.


While mushrooms in general share most of these qualities, consumers like to be informed. CPG products packaging has been doing this for years.

Two other winners give a short cut for difficult to cook vegetables. Ocean Mist Farms has a steam pack for artichokes, and the companies Apio and Clear Lam made a resealable container for fresh cut butternut squash—which can be a real pain to peel and slice.


Impact Award winner Naturipe Farms’ “Berry Quick Snacks” took a different approaching, putting berries in one serving containers that protect the berries in bags and make them ready to grab and go. I’ve only seen this before with carrots and dip.

I can’t speak for the judges, but I’d say the last and final winner Hollandia Produce, for their “Live Gourmet Living Lettuce Squircle Clamshell & Shipping Container” won for the cool factor. The hydroponically greenhouse grown product is packaged in a clam shell with its roots attached.

According to PMA, the winners were judged on marketing, food safety, supply chain efficiency/functionality, sustainability and consumer convenience.

Check out the complete list of Impact Award Finalists.