Food packaging has been a standard for years and plays a big role in how we choose our food, use our food, and dispose of the packaging afterward. The goal of food packaging is to contain food in a cost-effective way while satisfying consumers and the industry requirements. To help you better understand the role of food packaging, this article takes a look at some of the top features food packaging is responsible for.
Preservation and Protection
In order to maintain the quality and safety of food, new and improved packaging products have been developed over time. Packaging provides protection from major external dangers, like physical, chemical, and biological influences. When food is exposed to things like moisture, light, or gases, compositional changes may be triggered. Because of this, food packaging materials are designed to provide a chemical barrier.
Additionally, biological protection through packaging prevents things like spoiling and the spreading of disease. Unfortunately, foodborne diseases cause about one out of six Americans, or 48 million people, to get sick, 128,000 to be hospitalized, and 3,000 to die every year. With that in mind, more and more steps are being taken to secure the safety of food products. Oftentimes, food products can be damaged in transportation. Because of this, packaging products can be designed to resist impacts, abrasions, and crushing damages. Due to the dangers of contaminated food, food packaging manufacturers must take extra precautions and use things like x-ray machines and metal detectors for food inspection.
Information and Marketing
Packaging and labeling serve to provide information about the product to the potential consumer. With that in mind, packaging may be designed to enhance the product image as well as to set it apart from similar products. Additionally, labels can be used to provide nutrition facts, allergy warnings, and any other tips or essential instructions. A product's packaging should provide all necessary information to the consumer as well as satisfy legal requirements.
Nowadays, people are looking for food packaging that is easy to access, hold, and dispose of. Additional factors include product visibility, ability to be resealed, and the ability to microwave. Because of this, packaging needs to allow consumers to minimize the amount of effort they need to put in to prepare and serve food. Convenience features add extra value to food products and are therefore more attractive to consumers.
Food packaging products have evolved over time to not only better protect the food but also to adhere to consumer demands. This involves more convenient packaging as well as recyclable and reusable packaging. Overall, packaging plays a major role in how consumers choose their food products.