Several main factors affecting food packaging safety

- Dec 10, 2020-

Several main factors affecting food packaging safety

1. Packaging Materials

Residues of hazardous substances in food packaging mainly originate from packaging materials, especially inks and solvents containing hazardous chemical materials such as benzene, n-hexane, and halogenated hydrocarbons as the main raw materials in the packaging and printing process. Moreover, such inks and solvents rich in harmful substances can also cause acute and chronic poisoning of operators during the production process, which not only affects the cooperative relationship between labor and management, but also seriously affects social stability.

Food flexible packaging materials mainly include polyethylene, polypropylene, polyester, polyamide and other polymer materials. These packaging materials show great differences due to their own molecular structure, molding process and additives added. Therefore, it is particularly important for food manufacturers to choose a packaging material suitable for their products, otherwise food safety issues will arise. For example, due to the poor barrier properties of the material, the shelf life of liquid milk will be shortened or even deteriorate in a short period of time. For the cling film, the freshness of vegetables cannot be guaranteed without proper ventilation. The potential harm of PVC cling film itself to the human body mainly comes from two aspects: one is that the residual amount of vinyl chloride monomer in the PVC cling film exceeds the standard, and the other is the use of DEHA plasticizer in the process of adding the PVC cling film to grease or heating. At times, DEHA is easily released, which is harmful to health after entering the human body with food.

Bisphenol A is a chemical substance commonly used in plastic food packaging materials, and it is also used in tin can inner coatings and adhesives. Bisphenol A in plastic food packaging can be incorporated into food after heating, and it has an estrogen-like function. Not long ago, American researchers found through animal experiments that BPA may increase the risk of breast cancer in women.

2. Printing ink

In addition to the general bonding force and abrasion resistance of the food packaging film, the food packaging film must be able to withstand the requirements of sterilization and boiling treatment, as well as freeze resistance, heat resistance, etc. to ensure that it is transported and stored. There will be no ink peeling, condensation, etc.

Relevant Italian authorities found a trace amount of photosensitive chemical substance-isopropyl thioxanthone in Nestle baby milk after sampling and testing. This substance originally exists in the printing ink of the baby milk packaging box, and it may be that a small amount of ink penetrates into the baby milk. There have also been incidents of printing ink contaminating food in China. In 2005, a food factory in Gansu found that the potato chips produced had a strong smell, and the factory immediately took back more than 600 boxes of products that had been wholesaled to the market. After testing by the Chemistry Laboratory of Lanzhou University, it is believed that the strange smell comes from the benzene in the printing ink of food packaging bags. If the residual amount of benzene exceeds the standard, it may cause cancer and blood system diseases.

3. printing art

At present, food packaging bags are basically gravure printing. All kinds of food packaging bags seen in supermarkets, including biscuits, pastries, milk powder, etc., are basically printed with chlorinated polypropylene inks. Mostly. However, most countries such as Europe and the United States mainly use flexo printing. Flexo printing is slightly inferior to gravure in terms of dot performance and printing quality, but it takes the lead in environmental protection.