UK-based food packaging solutions supplier Sirane LTD opened a new manufacturing facility and offices in Mexico which are now up and running, with manufacturing having begun in earnest within the last month.
Absorbent fruit pad production has now begun at the site in Guadalajara after months of planning, using machines shipped over to Mexico from the UK, said the company in a press release. The company did not reveal the amount of the investment.
And while the initial focus will be on the soft-fruit market, the ambitious team at Sirane North America have longer-term plans to actively develop other markets, including other food packaging areas and medical & healthcare.
Sirane North America is based in Guadalajara, close to the major berry growing regions and the headquarters of many major growers, and will focus initially on absorbent fruit pads – and the region’s berries and soft-fruit market.
But long-term the company has plans to develop a market for all of its food packaging range, particularly absorbent pads and cooking bags, as well as medical & healthcare products.
Simon Balderson, Managing Director and founder said: “Sirane North America’s site in Mexico is a major step for the company. The manufacturing of absorbent fruit pads is really a launch pad; it’s the product that has certainly taken us to Mexico, but not the only reason.
“People often ask us why Mexico? Well Mexico is the perfect place for Sirane to begin manufacturing. Certainly, in soft-fruit terms, it is one of the world’s major producers, but geographically it is also quite a distance from many of its major export markets.
“This means shelf-life matters to the Mexican growers, and they understand its importance. They are very experienced and highly educated in this area.
“I’ve visited the region myself, and found the growers to be very receptive to new technology, and keen to get involved. They are seriously excited by what we’re offering and have been as keen as we have to get local manufacturing.
“By opening manufacturing in Mexico, Sirane will be able to offer better service and better technology to the region, whilst also gaining from their expertise. The transport links will also connect us with major markets in Central and North America.
“The location in Guadalajara is perfect, close to the major growing regions and so close to customers, and on a new innovation park with easy access to the Pan-American Highway – well connected by road to much of North and Central America.
“We’ll also be able to supply into South America, and in particular the berry markets in Chile and Uruguay. Mexico will make serving these markets much easier.”
Mexico’s soft-fruit industry is one of the largest in the world. Its temperature, height above sea-level and rainfall make growing conditions ideal. Vast quantities of fruit including strawberries, blackberries, raspberries and blueberries are exported to Europe, North America and even the Far East – making packaging vitally important.
Sirane offers a range of absorbent pads for fruit, including standard absorbency, absorbent ‘cushioned’ Soft-Hold bubble pads, and our new Dri-Fresh ABV anti-microbial pads, which contain a blend of natural bio-flavonoids and organic acids which naturally enhance fruit’s own protective defences.
All of these products and more will be manufactured at the new 1,500 square-meter unit in Guadalajara, where there is scope to expand the site as the Mexican business grows.
Simon Balderson added: “Sirane North America will provide jobs in the region for engineers, scientists and in manufacturing. We have had great help from Pro Mexico in the UK, as well as the Mexican government and the local officials in Jalisco”.
“We realized some time ago that the service this market needed was local manufacturing. The market is vast – and the intention is for Sirane North America to grow with it. Long-term, Sirane North America should lead the way in terms of product development for this sector. In effect, we will be opening a fruit-based R&D department in the region long-term alongside the manufacturing.
Sirane’s food packaging division in the UK, which is based in Telford, Shropshire, offers a wide range of products, including absorbent pads for meat, seafood, fruit, poultry and cheese, cooking bags for the oven, microwave and BBQ, protective packaging such as sticky bone guard, and dividers for food presentation.