Chances are pretty good that your life has changed since you carried your lunch in an Aladdin-brand Six Million Dollar Man lunch box.
But with life getting more stressful for workers from the manufacturing floor to the corner office, Aladdin is out to start carrying your lunch once more.
The company — part of Seattle-based Pacific Market International — and a handful of its competitors have spent the last few years debuting new items that make it easier for workers to pack their own lunches.
“We were hearing it from the consumers that because of the economy … they want to save money by bringing their lunch to work, or they just don't have time to get away from their desk,” said Jenn Ottele, marketing manager for PMI, during the International Home + Housewares Show, held March 10-13 in Chicago.
Aladdin began offering the first products for the “adult lunch” line in 2011 and expanded it this year with a series of double-walled, leak-proof polypropylene containers.
Unlike children's lunch pails with their colorful graphics, the adult lunch boxes are designed to hold items like salads and vegetables. They have bowls that collapse, thanks to two-shot molding of PP and thermoplastic elastomer, and the new To Go line products are easier to pop into a microwave.
“These have been more popular with some people who think of themselves as home chefs, and they want to show off their skills in the kitchen,” Ottele said.
The largest To Go insulated container holds 24 ounces of food and has a divided interior to keep a main dish and side dish separate.
But Aladdin does not have the adult lunch category to itself.
Newell Rubbermaid Inc. is rolling out is own LunchBlox, a series of containers that stack and snap together for organization and transportation.
The PP LunchBlox products also have reusable freezer packs that snap into place along with the containers, making it easy to keep food fresh, according to Newell Rubbermaid.