The international food and beverage industry’s determined advocacy of practical food safety systems and reliable leak detection equipment have been a strong trend over the last decade. Leaks in food product packs compromise both quality and safety.
The packaging must not only retain its strength integrity but also maintain the appropriate physicochemical characteristics that preserve and protect food products as they move through the entire supply chain. In doing so, the product must also not be adversely affected by interactions to cause loss of quality.
Demands for Higher Safety Levels
With the ever rising consumer demand for ready-to-eat (RTE), fresh, high quality, and safe foods, companies in the food supply chain have been compelled to adopt a variety principles, practices, and scientifically-based measures so as to maintain public confidence. This comes in the wake of the globalization of food distribution, and the emergence of new requirements in terms of food safety assurance and regulatory compliance.
Increased Food Shelf-Life
The continued emphasis being laid towards extending products shelf life to meet the ever growing consumer demand (as well as storage/distribution requirements) will continue presenting new food microbial safety challenges in terms of spoilage organisms, toxins, and pathogens. This has prompted food technologists to develop a number of product Leak Detection Equipment and technologies.
For long, leading food companies have promoted and continue promoting food safety because they appreciate that it’s not only good for business but that maintaining quality and safety are the important concerns to consumers.
Underwater Bubble Emission/Vacuum Testing
Underwater vacuum, as well as bubble emission testing can be used in detecting leaks in food and product packs down to nearly 250 microns. These tests are currently being used widely in the food industry as a reliable and quick off-line safety check during the entire process of production and packing.
Can leak testing is a process that entails internal pressurisation of food cans with air with the aim of testing for any leaks in the can seams. These are held underwater for some time and any leaks become evident as a stream of bubbles being emitted from the seam.
Dye Penetration Testing
Dye penetration testing is used in detecting leaks in product and food packs down to almost 10 microns. These tests are conducted over a duration lasting 24 hours. They are particularly effective for testing for leaks in the pack seal area.
The commitment to well-organized food protection that is being echoed by many in the food distribution and supply chains over the several years has led to great and innovative scientific advances.
Identifying and controlling emerging food safety hazards and reducing the rising incidence of food borne ailments is going to rest on how well the global industry, in partnership with the policymakers and scientific community, can maximize on these advances towards meeting the challenges posed by food and product safety.