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Overview 4. In depth discussion: vacuum packing and MAP (modified atmosphere packaging) (October 22nd, 2007) next step: 5. In depth discussion: cold-seal and countline flow-pack (November 30th, 2007) 6. In depth discussion: high barrier powders, liquid and coffee

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Overview

4. In depth discussion:

vacuum packing and MAP (modified atmosphere packaging)

(October 22nd, 2007)

next step:

5. In depth discussion: cold-seal and countline flow-pack

(November 30th, 2007)

6. In depth discussion: high barrier

powders, liquid and coffee

(January 25th, 2008)

' +39.02.93269.1

7 +39.02.9302569

[email protected]

þhttp://www.neophane.it

also available on our internet site www.neophane.it


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ISO 9001:2000 certification, since 1993

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þhttp://www.neophane.it

Overview n°4, 10/22/07 - page 2/12


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BRC certification, since 2004, one of the first firms in Italy for this sector.

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Overview n°4, 10/22/07 - page 3/12


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Overview N° 4

Oct. 22nd, 2007

4

vacuum packing and MAP (modified atmosphere packaging)

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Overview n°4, 10/22/07 - page 4/12


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The flexible packaging

Following a strict but not widespread definition, flexible packaging is a container that, in normal conditions, in which the internal atmosphere, is at atmospheric pressure. This is possible because it can adapt itself to variations of the external pressure.

A basic and exclusive characteristic of flexible packaging, is that these packs are formed and sealed by automatic machines, at the same time as being filled. These machines are generally called “FFS”: Form-Fill-Seal.

Leading substrates in flexible packaging, are plastic films, thin materials based on paper and/or card, and aluminium foils.

It is combining these materials, that the different laminated films (thin multilayer structures) are created . These products are now widely used in the field of food wrapping.

The characteristic that is becoming more sought after, is improvement of the barrier properties to gas and water vapour, in order to guarantee or to improve the shelf-life of the wrapped product.

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Overview n°4, 10/22/07 - page 5/12


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Multi-layer’s properties

  • The primary property of the laminated structures is the thermo-sealing capacity, in order create the final package from the substrate.

  • More and more often, the flexible packaging must possess other performance characteristics, in order to:

    • preserve dry products from atmospheric humidity;

    • preserve moist products, stopping moisture loss and drying

    • protect the product from external odours;

    • prevent loss of the aroma;

    • protect the product from the oxidative action of sunlight;

    • protect the product from the oxidative action of the oxygen in the air (vacuum packing or MAP - modified atmosphere packaging);

    • retain the CO2 and N2 gases, that have replaced atmospheric oxygen (MAP - modified atmosphere packaging).

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Overview n°4, 10/22/07 - page 6/12


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Packing processes

  • Flexible packaging creates its structure around the needs of the products: if the product or it’s packing process changes, the wrapping structure must change.

  • It is for this reason, that the choice of wrapping structure must come as a result of deep analysis, carried out with the collaboration of the end-user with.

  • As already pointed out in the previous overview, it is necessary to have knowledge of the wrapped product, the analysis of the graphic design to be printed and of the raw materials to be converted (films, inks and adhesives), as well as of all the final product’s process: wrapping and preservation.

  • The different packing processes are roughly classified as per the setting on which the product is sealed:

    • in air atmosphere

    • in modified atmosphere

    • in vacuum

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Packing processes- continued

  • Packaging in normal atmosphere is the process used for those products that do not deteriorate either through air contact, or through atmospheric humidity. On the contrary, when the shelf-life of the product can be affected by these two things, it is possible to avoid them. There are two different processes that can realise this kind of packing in modified atmosphere:

    • replacing the air through a “cleaning flow” with a compensating gas (usually nitrogen), up to a concentration approaching 100%;

    • Removing the air in vacuum assemblies. It is then possible to regulate the handling consistency of the pack, blowing in predetermined percentages of nitrogen, from 0 up to 100% of the removed air: if there is no compensation (it means 0%), it is considered vacuum packed.

  • It is easy to understand the importance of gas barrier to the structures for these final applications.

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Overview n°4, 10/22/07 - page 8/12


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STRUCTURES

A typical application of these laminates is as a lidding foil on machine with thermoformed container at the bottom: the thermoformed containers are filled with the product (like meat, delicatessen or cheese) and sealed with this film, often decorated with print.

The PE film can also be peelable, in order to aid the opening of the pack, this represents added value very appreciated by the end-consumer.

These structures can operate in the modified atmosphere field, thanks to the EVOH layer (or sometimes PVDC), on condition that the bottom also includes in its structure a barrier skin. During the sealing-phase, a gas mixture of N2 / CO2 / O2 is introduced, in different ratios relative to the food packaged.

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Overview n°4, 10/22/07 - page 9/12


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STRUCTURES- continued

In this structure, the PVOH lacquer gives the material a high gas barrier, particularly to oxygen, but also to the aromas of the wrapped product. This film can be laminated with other lacquered polypropylene film (so that it also gains the two side sealing property), or with polyethylene. The final structure is rigid, printable and can be used either as lidding foil (if laminated with PE), or for the wrapping of dry products, sensitive to oxygen (like nuts, peanuts, pistachios, almonds).

The principal properties of this structure are:

good gas barrier (but also to water vapour), significant protection of the aroma and preservation by odours, good rigidity and printability.

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Overview n°4, 10/22/07 - page10/12


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STRUCTURES- continued

The use of Nylon gives a good gas barrier, often used for vacuum wrapping (like rice), in lamination with the PE film, from which it is also possible to eliminate the EVOH skin.

This structure (widely used for ground coffee, with or without a valve), assures the best barrier thanks to the presence of the aluminium foil. After the filling, the pack goes through a vacuum station where the air is removed while the product is pressed. The properties of the packed product are guaranteed by the aluminium foil and by the absence of air.

The foil also gives rigidity and assures the folding during the wrapping process.

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Overview n°4, 10/22/07 - page11/12


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Overview

Next step on November 30th, 2007

5

cold-seal and countline flow-pack

' +39.02.93269.1

7 +39.02.9302569

[email protected]

þhttp://www.neophane.it

also available on our Internet site www.neophane.it starting Nov.30th


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