The global packaging specialist Sealed Air and the leader in the field of source tagging Checkpoint have joined forces to develop the first integrated system for source tagging shrink bags designed to pack fresh food products. These patent pending, RF EAS 2010 Food Safe tags are inserted automatically into Cryovac vacuum shrink bags suitable for direct food contact. They allow a significant increase of theft detection at retail.
Food Safe and Tamper-Proof Solution
SmartPak tags are certified for direct food contact and inserted inside the Cryovac shrink bags at the manufacturing stage, thus making tampering impossible: the tag cannot be removed without destroying the entire pack.
This unique development fills a clear request from large retail for a reliable and cost-effective source tagging solution that would be tamper-safe. The technologies and know-how acquired by Sealed Air and Checkpoint in the fresh product preservation and source tagging fields after several years of significant R&D investments have resulted in this exceptional innovation.
This anti-theft solution is easily implemented at the food processor/packer, but also at the retailer, as it is fully compatible with the most common security gates in fresh food retail. The integrated tag will start off an alarm at the cash register if the product is not paid for and the tag deactivated.
A Success at a Major European Retailer
A major European retailer decided to find a solution to counter the increasing theft rate of high value products (for example 9% for Parmigiano cheese in Italy) by implementing a wide source tagging plan for Grana cheese as a starter. The results proved extremely effective showing a clear increase in the detection of stolen cheese at the cash desk. Following the first successful tests carried out in some stores in the fall of 2007, the retailer decided to extend the solution to all of its stores.
Designed for High Value Products
The SmartPak anti-theft solution is available for Cryovac BB325, OSB3050 and OSB5050 TS bags, where the tag is inserted into the bag during the converting step at manufacturing. They are ideally suited for high volume, high added value fresh food products that tend to generate high theft rates at retail.
The first target segment has been dairy products such as Grana and Parmigiano parmesan cheese chunks in Italy. The concept is clearly suitable, however, for other high value smoked and processed meats or fresh meat consumer units and the trend will soon pick up throughout European retail.
This convenient ‘drop-in' solution does not require any special modifications or settings on existing packaging equipment and it works with standard manual/automatic loaders.
"With the RF technology provided by Checkpoint, we are able to help our customers and retailers further improve their bottom line by reducing the in-store theft of high value food products", said Gerd Wichmann, Marketing Director Sealed Air Cryovac Europe. "But the concept also offers more opportunities in the fresh food segment, particularly with the RFID (Radio Frequency Identification) technology. Main retail chains will require additional integrated source tagging solutions for several fresh high value products over the next years."