Chosen by a global chilled food producer for its industry leading reputation for supplying reliable flexible lidding solutions, KM Packaging Services Ltd has helped a multi-award winning, high street supermarket chain launch a pre-prepared, straight to oven casserole range. Unlike other ready meal casseroles, this latest creation combines raw meat, fresh chunky vegetables and rich gravy in a deep aluminium foil tray / dish that can be placed straight into the oven. KM Packaging’s role was to design and supply a lidding film solution that would be highly process tolerant and deliver superior shelf appeal.
To recreate the impression of a ‘home-cooked’ meal, the pre-prepared casserole is oven cook only and has a longer cooking period than traditional ready meals of over 1¾ hours. This has a big impact on the performance of the lidding film required, as it needs to stay sealed to the aluminium base dish for the majority of the cooking period but also have a smooth hot peel so it can be removed for the last half an hour of oven time.
Renowned for its technical competency, KM Packaging quickly set to work and carried out meticulous product trials to carefully assess the compatibility of various films to the chosen lacquered foil dish, monitored the reaction of films during the gas flush process and examined their behaviour throughout the cooking cycle. From these material tests, KM Packaging was able to custom design and develop a strong lidding film able to provide maximum product security, taking into account the unusually heavy weight of the product and prolonged oven times.
KM Packaging’s UK and Ireland’s sales manager, Alan Lockhart, commented: “KM Packaging is thrilled to have been able to play such a vital role in delivering this unique and exciting new casserole concept. “We were chosen for the job based on our passed experience in the lidding film market. As the first UK company to develop the lidding solution for sealing to aluminium foil trays nearly 15 years ago our customer felt we were the most sensible and practical choice for being able to deliver a product that would meet their precise specifications. “Our knowledge of the marketplace is widely recognised amongst leading food companies in the UK and we have worked with some of the most highly respected brands in the world.
We have positioned ourselves at the leading edge of flexible packaging materials and know that as food products evolve and diversify, the demands of lidding film performance will only grow with it. “We see it as our responsibility to have solutions ready for customers even before they ask for them and we are committed to always being at least one step ahead of the next trend.”KM Packaging revolutionised the ready meals industry with its lidding film for aluminium foil trays and has since continued to invest in new technologies and flexible packaging solutions. For more information about the company and its vast range of flexible and reliable packaging solutions, please visit the website www.kmpack.co.uk