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French consumers want small, sustainable sizes

What are French consumers looking for when they go shopping for food? Convenience, small sizes and sustainability are some of the answers.

When French consumers leave the supermarket, their bags are full of small green products. Environmentally friendly green that is!

Consumer packaging in France is changing towards more sustainable packaging in small sizes, shows Superfos France’s many years of experience o­n the market. “Even though packaging o­nly accounts for 10 percent of a product’s CO2 emissions, our customers have had an increasing focus o­n sustainability and CO2 for a couple of years now. It is important for them to send a signal to the end-users that their products are packed in a sustainable way. They want weight reductions and recycled material and of course we always try to comply with their needs,” says Johann Menguy, Sales Manager at Superfos France. 

More plastic
This trend is supported by the fact that many French companies are beginning to convert from glass or metal packaging to plastic. It not o­nly reduces CO2 emissions, but also saves massive costs in transportation due to lower weight and easier stacking of plastic containers.

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 “It is extremely energy demanding to use metal or glass for packaging and lids and the CO2 emissions from this phase of the life cycle is 2.5 times higher than for plastic,” states Johann Menguy. 

Ready-to-use and easy to get rid of
Changing eating habits in France account for another trend towards more convenient, smaller packaging. An increased divorce rate and an ageing population mean more single-person households in France. Johann Menguy explains: “The decrease in the need for family meals has put more focus o­n snacking and food-to-go with much emphasis o­n easy and convenient packaging. Meals and snacks have to be ready-to-use, easy to get rid of and of course the freshness plays an important role too. Therefore, many customers appreciate our membrane sealing pot system that gives better air tightness and tamper evident system. Along with this, the packaging must look good and attractive which means that many of our customers are changing the offset printing o­n the packaging to IML (In mould label) decoration.”