LAKE FOREST, Ill. – Pactiv Corporation has completed the first three phases of a $14.5 million project to produce high-quality, molded-fiber, hinged-lid, carryout containers and other products at its Moorhead, Minn., facility. Initial production began early in 2009 and the project is expected to be fully operational by October.

The three newest manufacturing lines added 25 jobs and produce molded fiber products sold under the brand EarthChoice Fiber Blend Hingeware. The implementation of this new molded fiber manufacturing process and related customer demand has been so successful that Pactiv is adding additional capacity later in 2010, according to the company.

“Our foodservice customers are looking for additional choices for carry-out food packaging that is sustainable and compostable… Pactiv offers the latest in sustainable materials, performance and innovation,” said Pete Lazaredes, executive vice president and general manager of Pactiv’s Foodservice/Food Packaging segment. “Not only are we pleased with response to our EarthChoice products, we are already anticipating additional significant investments in our U.S.-based molded fiber manufacturing capabilities. Unlike many competitive offerings, Pactiv products are manufactured in the U.S., reducing the environmental impact of overseas transportation and distribution.”

This new proprietary technology allows for precision molding, which results in a lightweight, smooth, strong, high-quality foodservice carryout container, the company said. The process allows for finely-molded features such as curves, folds and precise in-molded closures. Made from a blend of wood pulp fibers from sustainable and renewable resources, EarthChoice Fiber Blend Hingeware is ASTM D 6868 certified, Cedar Grove Composting-approved and is processed without chlorine.

Pactiv Corporation is a leader in the consumer and foodservice/food packaging markets it serves. With 2009 sales of $3.4 billion, Pactiv derives more than 80% of its sales from market sectors in which it holds the No. 1 or No. 2 market-share position.