Tape closure systems using a metal-free closure work with a variety of packaging materials.

Packaging for bakery and snack products is a lot like dessert in the sense that people want to have their cake and eat it, too. Consumers want quality packaging that is convenient to their budget and daily use. However, they don’t want to leave a big environmental footprint. Likewise, equipment manufacturers want to produce a greater variety and volume of high-quality packages more efficiently and in a less expensive way.

That confluence of demands has repercussions in packaging formats and features. Bagging and closing systems are increasingly designed to meet these different and evolving needs.

Kwik Lok Corp. recently commissioned a consumer attitude and usage study that underscored what’s happening in the marketplace and how it affects packaging materials and machines. The study, which centered on bread packaging as well as packaging for fruits and vegetables, found that consumers are driven by convenience.

“They want to be able to carry it, lift it, close it quickly and reuse it,” said Michael Hammer, industry relations, Kwik Lok. “At the same time, there is a conflict going on, because they feel there is too much packaging in the industry. They want convenience but minimal impact.”

Bagging and closing materials are indicative of the concurrent push for sustainable and user-friendly packaging. At Kwik Lok, Mr. Hammer said closures have a minimal footprint and the benefit of recyclability.

More broadly, trends like the demand for fresh yet shelf-stable foods, single-serve and portion control are changing the ways baking and snack companies present their products.