Letting Bananas Breathe
MENLO PARK, CA—February 25, 2014—Landec Corp., a materials science company that develops and markets innovative and patented products for healthy living applications in food and biomedical markets, is expanding commercial applications for its patented BreatheWay technology packaging solutions. Landec’s BreatheWay technology naturally extends the shelf-life of fresh fruits and vegetables by optimizing the ratio of carbon dioxide and oxygen within the packaging. Expanding commercial applications using BreatheWay technology include:
- Chiquita Brands International—continuing orders for BreatheWay membranes for its Chiquita-To-Go banana program.
- Windset Farms—new packaging using BreatheWay technology to extend freshness for its Fresco cocktail cucumbers and for its line of sweet and hot peppers.
- Agroexport—new packaging featuring BreatheWay technology for the new commercial offering of its Villita Slice-n-Serve avocado product.
“Apio, Inc., Landec’s food technology business, is beginning to benefit from its research and development efforts to expand the use of BreatheWay technology into new commercial applications beyond those for Apio’s own fresh-cut vegetable and salad products,” commented Molly Hemmeter, Landec’s COO. “Apio currently uses internally over 100 million BreatheWay membranes per year for its specialty packaged bag and tray vegetable products shipped throughout North America. The initial volume of BreatheWay membranes for the new applications for Windset Farms and Agroexport will be small in fiscal 2014 as these new commercial applications gain traction. However, we expect that when combined with the on-going business from Chiquita, the gross profit contributions from BreatheWay membrane sales will become meaningful in future years.”
Chiquita has used BreatheWay packaging technology for extending the shelf-life of bananas since 2005. Its Chiquita-To-Go banana program relies on BreatheWay technology to deliver attractive ready-to-eat yellow bananas to coffee chains, convenience stores and mini-mart gas stations, businesses that in the past were reluctant to sell bananas due to their very short shelf life. The Chiquita-To-Go program delivers ready-to-eat bananas across the United States, including to most Starbucks, as well as in Canada and several European countries. Apio continues to ship membranes to Chiquita for its Chiquita-To-Go banana program.