- Chobani is transitioning its single-serve oat mix yogurt from plastic right into a paper-based cup. The brand new packaging, which took two years to develop, is predicted to succeed in retailer cabinets late this yr.
- The oat yogurt cups be part of Chobani’s current product improvements — oat milk, chilly brew espresso and occasional creamers — that have already got paper-based packaging that’s recyclable. The announcement comes as a part of a broader companywide initiative to enhance the sustainability of Chobani’s packaging by transitioning from plastic to paper, and to encourage different meals and beverage makers to comply with go well with.
- “Is that this going to resolve all the pieces in packaging? No, however it’s a step in the appropriate course,” mentioned Peter McGuinness, president of Chobani. “It is a … begin to cut back our reliance on plastic. There may be much more work” to do.
Chobani has spent a lot of the previous couple of years rolling out oat- and plant-based choices, ready-to-drink espresso and creamers, a no-sugar providing and different merchandise in an effort to rework the Greek yogurt pioneer right into a extra full meals firm.
However Chobani, which confidentially filed for an IPO in July, has taken discover of the sustainability push infiltrating the meals and beverage house and up to date a few of its packaging. Whereas the vast majority of its merchandise will proceed to make use of plastic for the foreseeable future, the brand new packaging for its oat-blend yogurt is indicative of an organization trying to cut back its environmental footprint and foster a broader dialogue over methods to make recycling simpler throughout the U.S.
“It’s a must to stroll earlier than you run,” McGuinness mentioned. “However our absolute intention is to broaden paper to different merchandise in our portfolio past our single-serve oat mix yogurt.”
Chobani’s paper cup is 80% paperboard, produced from responsibly sourced and renewable materials, the New York-based firm mentioned. The cup has a skinny plastic lining to keep up product high quality.
Meals and beverage makers as an entire have struggled to seek out cheap alternate options to plastic that may deal with temperature modifications, moisture and preserve merchandise recent.
However as shoppers push for extra environmentally pleasant packaging, producers have had little selection however to seek out different choices. Kraft Heinz introduced in January it’s testing a recyclable paperboard cup for its microwaveable Kraft Macaroni & Cheese product, and two years in the past Danish brewing large Carlsberg debuted a sustainable paper bottle prototype. Many water manufacturers even have embraced paper and even aluminum.
McGuinness underscored most of the challenges Chobani needed to overcome in growing the brand new packaging. Paper can leak, which creates meals high quality and questions of safety. It can also break aside on machines, wreaking havoc on costly know-how used to fill the yogurt containers. As well as, paper is extra expensive to make use of than plastic, McGuinness mentioned, however that hole ought to slender for Chobani because it builds scale by transitioning away from plastic throughout its different merchandise.
Chobani’s new packaging throughout its portfolio may pay massive dividends as shoppers place rising significance on not solely what they eat but additionally the fabric it is available in. Chobani claimed it is going to be the one main U.S. meals maker with a paper cup within the yogurt aisle, an element that would assist the model going ahead. Based on a examine performed throughout the pandemic by Schorr Packaging, 58% of shoppers mentioned they have been probably or very more likely to buy meals merchandise in packaging that clearly states it’s reusable or recyclable.
In a separate examine, Kearney discovered the variety of shoppers who take the setting into consideration when shopping for meals has been on the rise, particularly throughout the pandemic. Final April, 83% of shoppers mentioned they felt that manner, up 12 factors from 2019.
McGuinness mentioned together with new taste concepts, probably the most widespread issues shoppers ask Chobani is what the corporate is doing to make use of extra environmentally pleasant paper in its packaging as a substitute of plastic.
“Simply staying the place you might be would not work. It would not work for the business. It would not work for the corporate. It isn’t who we’re as a model,” McGuinness mentioned. “We’re simply making an attempt to guide just a little bit, encourage just a little bit.”