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Insulated pouches took first place in Pack Expo Selects

Article-Insulated pouches took first place in Pack Expo Selects

The recent Pack Expo event in Chicago saw a lot of winners in packaging, but the one that came out on top for the Pack Expo Selects 2010 title was Coldkeepers LLC’s Kold-To-Go thermal bags. The package beat out Airlite Plastics’ IML Bucket Line and Ampac’s Vapur water bottle, which came in second and third, respectively.

The patented three-ply Kold-To-Go thermal bag technology keeps products cold or hot for up to three hours, and also prevents freezer burn. Coldkeepers, located in Thomasville, GA, has been in business since 1998, and promotes itself as a true “manufacturer,” not an importer of products. The company specializes in a variety of products that keep foods and pharmaceuticals hot or cold as needed.

“This is our first retail packaging that is being manufactured at our facility,” said Lang Flowers III, president of Coldkeepers LLC. “We started retailing our hot/cold bags earlier and moved into manufacturing in 2005, which gave us the flexibility to expand our product line.”

The company makes its Streamliners brand, which are 0.75-inch-thick thermal insulated liners that keep pharmaceutical products cold up to 72 hours. However, the company’s Kold-To-Go bags for food products are becoming a big hit.

“We needed a way for our customer to get their product from store to home without it melting,” said Lionel de Bazelaire de Lesseux, VP of marketing and a co-founder with Flowers and Gary Stampfli, executive VP.  “There are a lot of temperature-sensitive products. We helped develop this package for them so they could sell their product at the retail level instead of just from vending machines.  A test marketing plan with Costco stores for the Chillz bag for Dippin’ Dots was a big success this past summer in a test market.”

Flowers added that the Kold-To-Go packaging was a concept that really answered a need for their customer, the maker of Dippin’Dots. “Many things are frozen using liquid nitrogen, and Dippin’ Dots tend to melt faster than regular ice cream, so our bags help prevent that.”

The three layers consist of a reflective outer layer to reflects radiated heat, an inner layer of closed-cell foam, and a layer of polyethylene. The Kold-To-Go bag keeps food (or medications) hot or cold for up to three hours, and is reusable, washable, and recyclable. It works with ice cream, frozen foods, and cold beverages.

The company sells its regular lunch bags using the same material as the Dippin’ Dots bag, so those are also reusable. According to Flowers, a good feature of the bags is that they prevent freezer burn, which is caused by the thawing and refreezing cycle. “The thermal bag helps maintain a constant temperature so food doesn’t melt on the outer edges, then refreeze, which means one of the huge advantages is that it increases shelf life,” said Flowers.

According to de Lesseux, the company has advanced the Kold-To-Go and made the product available to consumers as the Kold-To-Go Lunch Bags, now in grocery stores. These thermally insulated sandwich bags keep sandwiches fresh and cold for up to three hours.

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