Also known as MAP, this packaging process modifies the internal atmosphere by replacing oxygen and often replacing it with gas to extend the preservation period for various foods.
Food packaging is facing increased safety, and shelf-life demands that MAP packaging already answers to very well – but innovative modified and controlled environment packaging technologies are continually being developed because of its immense commercial potential.
Modified Atmosphere Packaging Technologies
Consumers want fresh, minimally processed products that last longer. MAP answers to the demands caused by an increasingly globalized market, where foods travel farther and longer than ever before.
Here are a few types of modified atmosphere technologies that can benefit you depending on the product you are packaging.
Gas Flush Packaging is one of the most popular technologies for the food and beverage industry. Nitrogen displaces the oxygen level inside a packaging which delays oxidation, decreases aerobic bacteria that spoil foods, and doubles as a filler to maintain package conformity.
Barrier Film Packaging decreases moisture and oxygen permeability, creating a barrier protecting perishables from rot and mold. Low-density polyethylene (LPDE) and polypropylene (PP) are standard barrier films. “Smart Packaging” films that indicate temperature, leakage, etc., are also an interesting choice.
Scavenger Packs contain ascorbic acid, iron powder, and/or activated carbon. These small packs are added to packages and absorb oxygen and moisture, which extends the life of the packaged product.
Packaging Valves are one-way valves that can be added to the package’s exterior to allow gases to escape – another excellent example of MAP packaging. These valves help release the pressure created by the product’s natural release of gas or other compounds as they age.
How does MAP enhance the shelf life of different foodstuffs?
Protection from atmospheric gasses improves the product’s longevity while reducing the formation of bacteria, oxidation, discoloration, spoilage, or off-flavors and textures. MAP also allows producers to use fewer preservatives while cutting their production costs. The happy by-product of MAP is providing foods at a lower overall cost!