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New technologies to revolutionize food labels and packaging
Publish date: 2023-05-31


How are technological advancements in packaging transforming the way food is packaged, stored and marketed in the food industry? Digitalization plays a key role in these innovative food packaging solutions. By using digital tools and wearable digital devices, connected workers can work in a data-driven environment, making the food packaging industry more effective, sustainable, efficient and economical. Here are some technological innovations in the food packaging industry:


1. Recyclable packaging


Recyclable packaging in the food industry is becoming increasingly important because it reduces waste and conserves resources. Several types of recyclable packaging are used in the food industry, including bags, cartons and boxes made of paper which can be recycled after use. Glass jars and bottles are 100% recyclable and can be reused multiple times, making them a sustainable option for food packaging.

Heineken, which is one of the world’s leading beer makers, is working with global glass manufacturer Encirc to use beer bottles made from 100% recycled glass, burning sustainable, ultra-low-carbon biofuels. 

Alter Eco, an American food company, makes chocolate bars that are packaged in 100% recyclable paper and cardboard, which can be recycled in municipal recycling streams.  


2. Edible packaging


Edible packaging is made from natural ingredients and can be consumed along with the food, reducing waste and promoting sustainability. These are made from food-grade ingredients such as starches, proteins and other natural compounds, and they can come in various forms such as films, coatings and containers. Edible packaging can enhance the sensory experience of food by adding an extra layer of flavor and texture to the fruit; an edible coating can add a crispy texture to snacks.

Spain's Bio2Coat is proposing to solve the problem of plastic waste coming from packaging materials with a 100% natural, edible coating that significantly extends the shelf life of fruits and vegetables. These coatings also improve appearance, inhibit fungal attacks and preserve the nutritional value of food.

American company Incredible Eats is on a mission to reinvent the way food is eaten by replacing all plastic utensils with edible cutlery. They make edible spoons that are not only visually appealing but also edible and ideal for eating ice cream.

3. Active packaging


Active packaging contains materials that extend the shelf life of food, reduce spoilage and enhance safety — oxygen scavenger sachets, antimicrobial packaging and ethylene absorbers. Active packaging extends the shelf life of fresh fruits and vegetables, prevents the growth of harmful microorganisms, reduces food waste and improves the overall quality and safety of food products.

Tyson Foods uses modified atmosphere packaging for its fresh meat products to extend their shelf life. The company also uses oxygen scavenger sachets to prevent spoilage and maintain product quality during transport and storage. 

Amcor, a global packaging company, has developed a range of active packaging solutions that incorporate oxygen scavengers and antimicrobial agents designed to improve the freshness and shelf life of packaged food. 


4. Smart packaging


Smart packaging uses sensors, RFID tags and other digital elements to monitor food quality, safety and freshness. Such packaging provides information about the condition of the food. The sensors, indicators and other monitoring systems can detect changes in the food such as temperature, moisture or gas levels and display that information to the consumer or retailer.

Bionix Technologies uses RFID tags to provide expiration alerts for items with short shelf life. This can help you improve stock management by preventing wastage and losses.

Insignia Technologies produces smart labels that change color to indicate the freshness of the food being displayed on retail shelves. This is useful for the consumer who can easily choose the freshest item when buying food. 


source: Label & Narrow Web

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