Packaging is essential in maintaining food protection, safety and freshness. High-quality packaging can positively affect the immediate environment of the food product, preserving the nutritional value, taste, smell and look. This is because it consists of barriers, seals and multilayer structures that can offer excellent protection to the food product.
Paramount Packaging outlines some of the most popular food packaging types and techniques.
Hermetic refers to packaging and containers that are completely sealed, preventing any gases or vapours from entering to preserve the freshness of food products. This airtight method of packaging prevents microbial growth, ensuring safety for human consumption. The most common hermetic packaging is canned foods, but plastic containers can also be hermetically sealed.
Aseptic packaging is a specialised process in which the food contact surfaces and food packaging materials are sterilised using chemical, thermal or radiation methods. Thus, the food contents are placed in a packaging container in a sterile environment to maintain the freshness of the product. The most commonly found aseptic packing includes beverage and soup packaging as well as pharmaceutical packaging.
A relatively new method of food preservation, freeze-drying involves the freezing of the food item in a vacuum chamber that also eliminates all moisture. Once frozen, it is stored in airtight packaging. A big benefit of this process is the removal of almost 98% of the moisture, making it lightweight and more cost-effective to transport.
In this method of food preservation, the air is removed from a packet of food before it is sealed. As there is no oxygen in the packaging, there is no possibility of microorganisms growing and destroying the product. As there is no oxygen in this packaging, the risk of spoilage due to oxidation also reduces substantially.
Protection from moisture
Also known as dehydration, this process of preserving food by removing all moisture increases the shelf life of the food product substantially. Drying food is an easy process that can be done at home too. Food products that are moisture-free are highly nutritional as well.
Other types of packaging
Apart from these, other packaging techniques help preserve and protect food products:
- Active packaging: This type of packaging enhances the shelf-life of the product by maintaining and improving organoleptic properties and temperature while removing unwanted substances such as certain gases.
- Intelligent packaging: This packaging monitors and informs users of the condition of the food product or the environment within the packaging such as the temperature.
For more information on how packaging can preserve food products, contact Paramount Packaging today!