Importance Of Food Packaging

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Food Packaging Needs
To protect food products from outside influences and damage, to contain the food, and to provide consumers with ingredient and nutritional information (Coles 2003). Secondary functions are: Traceability, convenience, and tamper indication. These secondary functions are of increasing importance in todays market. The goal of food packaging is to contain food in a cost-effective way that satisfies industry requirements and consumer desires. While at the same time it maintains food safety, and minimizes environmental impact.
Protection/preservation
Packaging can reduce product deterioration, help retain beneficial effects of processing, extend shelf-life, maintain or increase the quality and safety of food. This is possible
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Inadequate preservation/protection, storage, and transportation are causes of food waste. Those causes can be eliminated or reduced by the right use of packaging.
Marketing and information
The labeling is the face of a product and often the only product exposure consumers experience before buying anything. Implementation of distinctive or innovative packaging can boost sales in the competitive market. The packaging can provides information on labels that satisfie legal requirements for product identification, nutritional value, ingredient declaration, net weight, and manufacturer information. Additionally, information about cooking instructions, brand identification, and pricing. Adding labels or printing may impact waste disposal.
Traceability
"the ability to follow the movement of a food through specified stage(s) of production, processing and distribution" (Codex Alimentarius Commission 2004). There are 3 objectives for Traceability: improve supply management, facilitate trace-back for food safety and quality purposes, and to differentiate and market foods with subtle or undetectable quality
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It has a low moisture vapor transmission and Inertness toward acids, alkalis and most solvents.

Polystyrene (PS) Number: 6
PS is a versatile plastic that can be rigid or foamed. General purpose polystyrene is clear, hard and brittle. It has a relatively low melting point. Typical applications include protective packaging, foodservice packaging, bottles, and food containers. PS is often combined with rubber to make high impact polystyrene (HIPS) which is used for packaging and durable applications requiring toughness, but not clarity. It is commonly used in Food service items, such as cups, plates, bowls, cutlery, hinged takeout containers, meat and poultry trays, and rigid food containers. And in most cases it can be used in both in foamed form as in non-foamed form.
Properties
PS has excellent moisture barrier for short shelf life products, Excellent optical clarity in general purpose form. Significant stiffness in both foamed and rigid forms, Low density and high stiffness in foamed applications. And low thermal conductivity which gives it excellent insulation properties in foamed

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