How Peanut Butter Shaped the Plastic Industry

It has been a long time since food manufacturers started transitioning products from glass containers to plastic. While some manufacturers of spreads like jam and vegemite seem to favour glass jars, peanut butter is nearly always in a plastic container these days. In fact, peanut butter brands were among one of the first major products to transition to plastic jars, creating a ripple effect in the food industry. It started in 1988 with Best Foods deciding to put Skippy peanut butter in a plastic jar, saying consumers liked it more.

Why Change from Glass?

Parents were delighted when the risk of glass shattering was eliminated when the kids wanted to have peanut butter sandwiches. Food producers loved the ability to use packaging that was more sustainable and cheaper to produce and transport. Glass may look fancy, but the downsides of the material came to be too much for producers. From the risk and danger of breakage to the increased weight, PET packaging came to be more viable in every way.

Other Peanut Butter Producers Transition

Peanut butter producers, Planters, switched to plastic packaging and now uses 84 per cent less material by weight. The lightweight, shatter-resistant plastic jars allowed them to pack more on trucks, and they claim that the change from glass to plastic resulted in an estimated 25 per cent reduction in the number of trucks on the road delivering the product. U.K peanut butter brand, SunPat, also switched to plastic packaging, reducing its weight by 90 per cent. Their new jar contains 50 per cent recycled plastic, and, like other plastic jars, delivers a lower carbon footprint during transportation. When compared with glass jars, a truckload can contain up to one third more plastic packaging because it is lighter and can take up more space without overloading. Since plastic packaging is less likely to break, it also reduces the need for a lot of secondary packaging. These factors also help prevent food waste, save on total transportation energy required, and decrease greenhouse gas emissions.

Benefits of Using PET Plastic Packaging

  • Easy access to raw materials
  • They are less likely to break and cause the contents to spill out
  • Lighter and therefore easier and cheaper to transport products
  • They are lighter than glass, therefore it costs less to ship
  • Less energy is required to produce them
  • PET plastics are generally cheaper
  • PET plastics are BPA free and fully recyclable
  • They are easy to print on
  • They are durable and flexible
  • PET bottles reduce wastage because they can be resealed
  • They serve as excellent oxygen barriers, which protects and preserves the product
  • PET has high clarity just like glass. The transparency allows the customers to view the product within

Need Plastic Packaging for Your Food Products?

Dolphin Plastics & Packaging is a leading plastics manufacturer based in Queensland. We are committed to producing sustainable plastic packaging solutions for organisations in a variety of industries, including food production across Queensland and down the east coast of Australia.   To find out more about how we can help you, call Dolphin Plastics & Packaging today on (07) 5610 5278 or contact us online.