In a world of seven billion people which will increase to over nine billion by 2050, wasting food makes no sense – economically, environmentally or morally. Yet one-third of food is lost or wasted, leading to incalculable losses of water, energy and investments.
The global trend towards urbanisation means that more fresh products travel longer distances to reach the customer. Plastic packaging can make a substantial contribution to protect and preserve foodduring all processing stages, from farm to fork. It helps keep food fresh longer, protects it during transportation and storage, and increases shelf life. Innovative plastics also help processors avoid food spoilage and contamination through leak-resistant packaging and efficient filling systems.
Consumer lifestyles today also require more convenience products which are practical, time-saving, ready to eat or deep frozen that provide food in small microwaveable easy-to-open packaging as well as in packaging which can be re-sealed or spilt into portions.
Increasing food production to meet the needs of the world's growing population is another major challenge. The optimisation of crop quality from existing agricultural land is essential to meet global food needs. High-end fertilizers provide efficient utilisation of fields, improve the quantity and quality of harvests and guarantee high nutrient safety with regard to content and effect.
Packaging has an important role to play when it comes to protecting food and reducing food waste. To achieve more sustainability in the industry, packaging producers strive to use less material, but these solutions still need to deliver the same performance in order to maintain product quality, safety and packaging functionality. Borealis and Borouge, leading providers of innovative, value-creating plastics solutions, are working hard to deliver answers to this challenge and have introduced new solutions for beverage packaging.
Achieving the necessary balance of quantitative and qualitative crop production in a sustainable way is known as the 'precision farming' concept. Precision farming is based on providing crops with exactly the right amount of fertilizer needed at each stage of their growing cycle, thereby preventing the run-off of excess nutrients and preserving the quality of both the soil and water resources.