( Courtesy North Bay Produce )

North Bay Produce Inc., Traverse City, Mich., is focusing on sustainability with a grant that will allow it to purchase compostable packaging equipment for blueberries.

The Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development in August announced North Bay would receive a $125,000 grant to purchase the equipment. The company was one of 20 that received grants from the state’s Value Added and Regional Food System Grant Program, according to the state’s department of agriculture.

The grant allows North Bay Produce to decrease plastic in packaging, with a 34% reduction by switching from plastic clamshells to biodegradable trays with a resealable plastic top.

“Top seal packaging will set the new standard for how blueberries are sold in the U.S.,” Jon Wall, vice president of operations, said in the release.

As consumers become more aware of sustainability issues, more retailers are focusing on compostable packaging options, according to the release. 

“The compostable packaging will resonate with young buyers who are demanding companies create less waste,” according to the release.

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