Adapt or improve gas permeation properties and light barrier

Check, adjust, improve packaging functionnality

Controlling the gas composition in contact with the product is the basis of many strategies for preserving food products. Therefore, the permeability of packaging to water, oxygen, and CO2 is an essential characteristic to be controlled.

Define the gas permeability levels just necessary for optimal preservation of the product, i.e. making it possible to reach the defined shelf life target. Avoid oversizing packaging's material properties.

Scientific based reccomendations and insights for practical applications
Comments, links

Dry products

Is my product very hygroscopic and sensible to water?

Some dry products do not need the use of water barrier packaging.

Microbiologically unstable products stored at cold positive temperature

Does the microbiologic stabilization of my product need to maintain a modified atmosphere composition?

If not high barrier oxygen is not necessary.

Products sensitive to oxidation

Thermally sterilized products need a high oxygen barrier whatever their sensitivity to oxidation, taking into account their very long shelf life + their high-temperature treatment.

All other products show very different behaviour regarding oxygen sensitivity; it must be considered case by case what is the required level of oxygen barrier.

Fresh cut crude products requiring breathing packaging

The specifications of these products must be defined very precisely; their controlled respiration (limited entry of oxygen and limited evacuation of CO2) presents an optimum with respect to which any deviation in positive OR negative permeability leads to a reduction in service life.

The expected permeability levels are quite high. Depending on the types of products and the expected O2/CO2 selectivity, OPP, LDPE, perforated or macroperforated OPP type packaging are used. Bioplastic films provide variability in breathing properties which are still little valued.

Products sensitive to light

need of light barrier

Check if the light barrier is really necessary regarding the targeted shelf life.

Case of paper-based packaging for which the barrier to liquids (oil and water) must be adjusted

  • Liquid absorption is a negative property to avoid
  • Liquid absorption is a positive property

Adjust the barrier (oil and or water) level required as a function of targeted shelf life to be adjusted (e.g. for cheese end of ripening).