It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas, with a festive frenzy of Christmas markets popping up in cities across Europe. The ancient German institution is rapidly being adopted throughout the globe as shoppers look for more traditional, authentic Yuletide experiences, where the smell of gingerbread, mulled wine and Bratwurst greets you at every turn and artisan wares gleam in the twinkling lights.
This beloved seasonal custom is growing hand-in-hand with the rising street food trend, which is becoming for many the preferred way to dine out as cuisine options develop a more premium aspect and consumers seek out diverse cultural dishes. Whereas baked goodies like Lebkuchen and Stollen are staples at Christmas markets, it’s the hot food offerings that are seeing a surge in popularity, with people frequently meeting at the cosy cabins for a high-quality meal-on-the-go. In the same way as groups would assemble at a bar or restaurant, more and more are choosing to feast in the immersive atmosphere of these winter wonderlands (often before heading to the Bierkeller for a warming Glühwein).
The expectation for restaurant-standard outdoor eating poses catering challenges in terms of packaging premium fare in cold conditions. To adequately protect, preserve and present food while maintaining its gourmet standard, retailers must utilise high-performing solutions that offer insulation and user-friendliness. EPS offers the ideal answer.
An excellent insulator with moisture resistant qualities, it can be relied upon to keep contents warm or cold with defense from the elements during a wintery flurry, making it perfectly suited for takeaway packaging no matter what weather the Christmas season brings.
Despite its outstanding thermal regulation, EPS also experiences very low rates of thermal conductivity, meaning there’s no risk of burning your hands while dining on the move. Its superior barrier protection adds extra user-friendliness with no need to worry about food leaking through cartons, while the durable, shock-absorbent body shields meals from the jostling market crowds.
Food is furthermore protected by EPS’ strong hygiene credentials and non-toxic, chemically inert status. Appropriate packaging is critical to food safety, and this material performs highly in terms of preventing fungi and bacteria growth without transferring harmful substances.
Some takeaway vendors have shied away from the material in recent times due to the myths surrounding it in the press, but don’t be fooled - it’s actually much more sustainable than many believe. On-the-go eating naturally involves single-use packaging, so it is important that the cartons used are as sustainable as possible. Single-use doesn’t have to mean single-life and, accordingly, EPS can be fully recycled. It offers exceptional sustainability with a 93% air content making it one of the lightest materials available and delivering a low carbon footprint. As it does not biodegrade, the risk of it contaminating the air or water with gases or hydro soluble substances is eliminated.
As a leading food packaging manufacturer at the forefront of innovation, LINPAC (Klöckner Pentaplast) develops EPS solutions that reflect the dining experience they are intended for, ideally catering for the requirements of the snowballing Christmas market trend. With a huge range of sizes, shapes, colours and styles, our cartons are perfect for keeping your waffles warm and your Pommes piping hot.
Although it’s been said many times, many ways, EPS is superbly suited to keeping high-quality street food at its tastiest. So go grab your Christmas jumper, head out for a meal full of festive cheer and let the bells ring out for Bratwurst!