While food packaging certainly needs to play its role in the promotion of product and brand, you need to ensure the safety of foods as first thing while designing the food packaging. Therefore, it is very important to design a package in such a way that the food safety and effective branding are ensured.
In this article, we are going to discuss about food packaging that complies with the food processing methods.
An effective food processing method to talk about is the retort sterilization or retorting. This process mainly involves vacuum sealing of the food inside a pouch or metal can and then heating of it at higher temperature. This way, the foo gets sterilized. With the help of retorting, you can make sure that the food retains its freshness and natural flavor for months, or even years. This food processing method was originally developed by NASA. Since food is packaged before it is retorted, the packaging must be able to resist extreme temperature changes and mild pressure.
Aseptic food processing
This kind of food processes involves brief exposure of foods to very high temperature and then cooling down to ambient temperature instantly. The food is then placed in a sterilized packaging which is sealed in a sterile environment. And since this type of packaging needs to be sterilized on-site right before the packaging of foods, it usually comes in the form of rectangular cartons instead of bottles because these cartons take less space.
Microwave-assisted thermal sterilization
Microwave-assisted thermal sterilization is the new approach and it resembles retort sterilization. This food processing method involves immersing of food packaging in hot water which is heated by microwave. The food is then quickly cooled down. This type of food processing is even more effective as compared to retorting because it preserves flavor, texture, color and nutrients in much better way. The materials used for this packaging of foods to be processed this way include high-barrier plastic pouches and trays that are microwave-resistant.
This kind of food processing involves application of pressure on the food. The food is placed in a high-pressure container which applies a pressure of 145,023 pounds per square inch for about five minutes. As a result of this pressure, the foods, which contain moisture, shrink up to 20%. And so, the packaging materials used for the packaging of such foods have to accommodate this pressurized food. In this case, the flexible packaging is a must.