Brand owner SPC Ardmona topped the food services category of the Save Food Packaging Awards with its ProVital easy-open portion-control fruit cup.
According to the company, healthcare food waste is as high as 30 per cent in the hospital setting, much higher than other foodservice environments.
“High levels of plate waste contribute to malnutrition-related complications in hospital, and there are also financial and environmental costs,” a spokesperson said.
“Packaging accessibility has been identified as a key issue contributing to rates of poor patient nutrition within hospitals in Australia, where it is estimated that up to 40 per cent of patients experience some form of malnourishment.”
Under government instruction, NSW HealthShare, in partnership with Arthritis Australia and Georgia Tech Research Institute, began work to improve the accessibility of portion control packaging within the healthcare sector.
The need for improvements in accessibility are in response to factors such as Australia’s ageing population, the need to reduce food wastage in hospitals and improving nutritional standards within hospitals.
This work resulted in the requirement for all portion control packs to have an Initial Scientific Review (ISR) Accessibility Rating, to predict what percentage of the population can open the product without assistance and to be eligible for use in New South Wales public hospitals.
The development of the SPC ProVital easy-open portion controlled fruit cup range represented SPC Ardmona’s commitment to being at the forefront of the accessibility issue within healthcare.
The SPC ProVital range of fruit cups were specifically designed with easy-open packaging, which was developed using the guidelines established by Georgia Tech and Arthritis Australia, to assist with designing products that all consumers can open, including those with reduced fine motor skills, dexterity and strength.
SPC ProVital Apple Puree was ISR tested and received Arthritis Australia’s +8 accessibility rating.
This is the highest possible rating and predicts that 95 per cent of the population can open the SPC ProVital fruit cup easily.
The Save Food Packaging Awards is a global program that has been developed by the World Packaging Organisation, in conjunction with Messe Dusseldorf and Interpack.
The awards recognise companies that are developing innovative and sustainable packaging that minimises food losses and food waste, extends shelf life and improves the supply of food.
The Save Food Packaging Awards for ANZ were launched earlier this year by the AIP.