Astrapak commits to quality in all processes and this is defined in the products they manufacture. Quality does not come by chance and requires exceptional attention to detail. Watching an experienced and renowned sushi chef (Itamae) apply their trade leaves no doubt to the painstaking desire to deliver excellence in their final food offering. It is most appropriate that Astrapak should offer their innovation and passion to the design and development of a market leading dedicated Sushi packaging tray.
For Astrapak this is a brand new product offering. With the growing trend of sushi being available in ever increasing and remote parts of our country, more and more consumers are opting for this age-old Japanese cuisine as an alternative to traditional take-aways. Having identified this need in the market, Astrapak has – as one would expect – responded swiftly by designing a perfect solution and preparing themselves to go to market.
“We are currently in a prototype phase and have not yet launched in the market place,” said Thermopac Key Account Manager, Michelle Petersen. “Feedback from our distributors and existing customers has been overwhelmingly positive and they are ready to place their orders.” The exciting project was initiated by Petersen’s colleague Yakash Haripersad.
As expected, Astrapak has relied on specific market research that involved speaking to an array of customers about what they wanted in a tray. “It would be remiss to say we have been first to market, instead we didn't just design a sushi tray, we took a long hard look at the market and came up with a practical and innovative product fit for purpose,” continued Petersen. “We focused on a practical solution allowing one to carry the take-away sushi easily and even eat it on-the-go.”
One clear unique element of the tray is the corner section, which is an integrated soya sauce section with its own lid. Carrying the soya sauce is generally a challenge as the little container is separate and can leak. Now there are no more messy sachets dripping all over. “We have used a clam-shell type tub and the lid is connected making it very secure,” explains Petersen. “It does not slide around and there is no chance for the sauce to leak out and touch the sushi.
“Part of our design philosophy on this product was making sure we understand that sushi typically does not have a long shelf life and so typically we designed our product to suit this period offering optimum closure and freshness in this period.”
Thermoforming technology, the manufacturing process, presents a cost-effective and high-speed production resulting in lightweight robust packaging with minimal waste. Added to this, Astrapak’s Thermopac factory extrudes their own raw material, thereby producing the sheet requirements for the forming process for their thermoformed sushi trays. Producing from raw to finished product is certainly an advantage ensuring food grade hygiene compliance throughout the production process. Food safety certification and accreditations include: FSSC 22000, ISO 22000:2005, BRC.
Ultimate ease of use of prepared meal packaging as used for sushi, is what drives Astrapak to go to great lengths so that consumers experience superior quality and satisfaction.