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Jeff Brandenburg, President, JSB Group LLC
Modified Atmosphere Packaging in one of the key technologies associated with the shelf life extension of fresh produce. MAP for fresh produce is a complex packaging application as the produce in the bag continues to respire, consuming O2 and giving off CO2. To design and optimize MAP, one first must quantify produce respiration rates (RR). Therefore when designing modified atmosphere packaging (MAP) for fresh produce the convergence of three distinct sciences must take place – produce physiology, polymer engineering and converting technology.
We will discuss the technology, materials, and applications of modified atmosphere packaging, MAP. Discussion will include the symbiotic relationship between the packaging and the produce and the importance of produce physiology when specifying packaging systems. Specific polymers, films, and structures will be reviewed with respect to their individual properties and subsequent impact on MAP. An analysis of packaging types and formats will also be detailed. Additive technologies such as antimists, slip, and antimicrobials, and their impact on the functionality of MAP will be explored. Common reasons why MAP fails will also be reviewed. We will conclude with some of the newest emerging modified atmosphere packaging technologies, such as MAP as a technology platform a marketing and branding tool as well as sustainability.
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