Our thermoformed tray solutions offer a range of material options with medium and high-barrier properties. Our custom thermoformed trays prolong freshness, and can be finished with an attractive paperboard sleeve.

Hormel ® // Party Trays That Show More By Using Less

Since launching in 2005, Hormel® Party Trays have been so popular, the product line has expanded beyond the original meats, cheese and cracker combination platters. But the packaging itself posed a few issues. Both consumers and retailers indicated a need for enhanced visibility—a large label was preventing them from seeing the food inside. Also, a lack of separation allowed the products to mix together. Finally, consumers were looking for a fresher, cleaner, and more sustainable package. This corresponded with Hormel’s overall packaging reduction efforts, part of their corporate responsibility strategy to reduce their environmental footprint.


Our in-house design process and 3D-rendering capabilities helped Hormel to quickly move into distribution testing while also controlling their upfront design and prototype costs. Moving forward with a square-shaped tray produced immediate sustainability benefits—a square tray doesn’t manufacture as much scrap as the previous round design. This change in shape also allowed the trays to fit more tightly into each corrugated case. Well-placed dividers were included to keep each product securely in place. And a new inset label function allowed a smaller label to be snapped under the lid, eliminating the need for overwrap to hold the label to the tray while providing generous visibility to the goodies inside.

Hormel was pleased to transition their packaging from PET to RPET, but their efforts toward sustainability went even further. This solution completely eliminated the need for shrink wrap. And because the necessary corrugated shipping case will be smaller, they’ll save more than 174,000 pounds per year in corrugated materials.

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