Thailand Institute of Scientific and Technological Research (TISTR), under the Ministry of Higher Education, Science, Research and Innovation (MHESI) has launched “3 Fresh Fruits Packaging Innovation for E-Commerce” including (1) Innovative Packaging for 100% Durian Odor Lock, (2) Innovative E-commerce Packaging for Fresh Fruit and Vegetable and (3) Smart Label Detected Sulfur Dioxide in Longan. This project aims to raise value creation for agricultural products and strengthen Thai entrepreneur’s competitiveness.
Dr. Chutima Eamchotchawalit, Governor of TISTR stated that TISTR by Thai Packaging Centre (TPC) has achieved its R&D in the project “3 Fresh Fruits Packaging Innovation for E-Commerce” composed of (1) Innovative Packaging for 100% Durian Odor Lock, (2) Innovative E-commerce Packaging for Fresh Fruit and Vegetableand (3) Smart Label Detected Sulfur Dioxide in Longan. The project focuses on promoting value-added in agricultural products and enhancing competitiveness of Thai entrepreneurs including serving customer needs in current situation. As the whole world is facing the widespread of COVID-19, this situation obviously affects the country’s economy, particularly, export and transportation sectors including domestic consumption. This problem results in a huge loss since a great number of high quality agricultural products that cannot be harvested in time and remain in domestic market. Therefore, it is an urgent need to procure or increase distribution channels for agricultural products to help farmers.
“E-commerce is one of the most effective ways that farmers and SMEs attempt to sell their products during the COVID-19 situation”. However, there are many issues and limitations; for example, there is no standardized packaging to effectively prevent damage of the products, high cost of shipping due to oversized packaging, some shipping companies reject parcels that contain with fresh fruits and vegetables or stinking products including the amount of residue that may be harmful with the human body. TISTR as the national R&D institute has strongly concerned to this problem, and this is also our key mission to support them to run their business smoothly by using S&T” Said Governor of TISTR.
“3 Fresh Fruits Packaging Innovation for Online Selling” by Thai Packaging Centre (TPC) are as follows:
Packaging Innovation “Odor-Proof Boxes for 100 % Durian Odor Lock”
TPC of TISTR has conducted R&D on thermoform packaging for fresh durian meat. The project was in cooperation with SAFER PAC Thailand under STIM for SMEs (fiscal year 2018). The special new design packaging is developed to completely control durian odor and prevent transmission of gas and water droplets effectively. Therefore, the smell of durian cannot flow out of the box. Furthermore, it can prevent moisture transmission from outside environment.
Recently, SAFER PAC has applied this technology for its commercialization by using the anti-fog PET plastic sheets to produce the durian storage box namely “Ozone Box”, under the brand of SAFER PAC. The product is very responsive by the wholesalers and retailers of durian both in-store sale or home delivery, and including the durian exporters.
Said by the researcher of TPC, the R&D applied the holistic design concept taking users’ convenience and functionality into account into account. The package is user friendly and cost effective. The remaining durian meat after consuming can be easily kept. With the package transparency, it displays durian on shelves clearly and be attractive. Significantly, this innovative packaging is eco-design package and thus providing sufficient mechanical strength without necessary to add more packaging material.
Mango Packaging for Online Selling
TISTR has conducted R&D on innovative e-commerce packaging for fresh fruit and vegetable, aiming to alleviate the economic recession during the outbreak of COVID-19 and support oversupply of ripe mangoes over 20,000 tons.Hence, TISTR has piloted a newly-developed, high mechanical strength packaging which can support 5 kilograms load per box and stack up to 14 layers. It is made from double wall corrugated paperboard which has low water absorption and can be stored in a cold room with high humidity. This is to maintain the product quality and reduce the product loss caused from non-standard packaging. The outside dimension of box is 50×30 cm. which is very convenient for shipping and comply with the transport conveyor system.
The graphic design is printed in one color to reduce the production cost, but able to provide necessary information of fresh produces such as produce name, net weight, and produce origin, etc. The box comes up in one size but can apply into various sizes of mango by using internal dividers to block the movement of mangoes inside the box.
Smart Packaging to Indicates Safety of Sulfur Dioxide Content in Longans
TISTR has done R&D on Sulfur Dioxide Smart Label. This packaging can monitor the amount of residual sulfur dioxide (SO2) on longan. The project aimed to engage customer’s safety and increase quality of Thai longan to meet international standard. The key principle was based on the chemical reaction between the indicator label and sulfur dioxide gas. Dark brown on label means the low content of sulfur, while the fade color or transparent means high or exceed amount.
This process is easy to understand by people to make their buying decision and consume. In addition, this innovation can raise standard of Thai longan quality to be accepted in international market and also enhance competitiveness of farmers and entrepreneur in Thailand. TISTR R&D result will be useful for establishing quality standards of longan, both for domestic sales and export. This technology is not only for consumer safety but also for building an absolute trust with partner for sustainable cooperation. Currently, the development of this label technology is at laboratory scale, but TISTR is keep going on its development to commercial and large scale technology.
Thai Packaging Centre (TPC) of TISTR is the national packaging center which provides integrated services on packaging including conducting research, training and comprehensive packaging testing.
Those who are interesting can contact TPC at its address 196, Paholyothin Road, Chatuchak, Bangkok 10900, Thailand. Tel +662 579 1121 ext, 3201, 3208, mobile +668 6546 6114, or E-mail : TPCfirstname.lastname@example.org .