Have you ever torn into a bag of your favorite chips and found the package to be only about three-quarters of the way full? You may have felt cheated, but you weren’t. That burst of air that escaped when the bag was opened was nitrogen gas. It replaced the oxygen that had filled the bag and is the reason your potato chips stayed fresh and tasty longer.
The bottles, cans, bags, and packages containing your favorite snack foods and drinks are all filled with nitrogen, not to fool you or make the contents look fuller, but to safeguard the food or beverage inside from the harmful effects of oxygen. The processed foods that we love so much are convenient and easy to transport and store, but they must be protected from the oxidation process that can harm them. Here is why:
Why Excess Oxygen is Bad
When you peel an apple or a banana they are exposed to the oxygen in the air and turn brown. The taste, texture, and eye appeal are negatively affected. The chemical reaction that produces that result is called oxidation. This same process works against all of the goods you manufacture. If unchecked, prolonged exposure to oxygen will cause your food items to go stale and possibly rancid.
Oxidation Shortens Your Inventory Shelf Life
Nitrogen purge systems are not standard in every packaging line. At JIT Services, we are frequently asked to explain the function of the nitrogen purging and if the service should be added to a packaging line. Whether nitrogen purge packing is necessary for your packaging line depends in part on the industry you are catering to and the products being packaged.
Pharma industries, food packaging companies, and breweries are just a few of the many industries that depend on the removal of oxygen to extend the use-by date of their products. This vital step in the product packaging line is important for any industry concerned with extending their inventory shelf life. Extending your products shelf life protects your profit margin. JIT Services can help you to meet the challenge of lengthening the expiration date of your products.
Excess Oxygen Creates Unnecessary Reduce Waste and Spoilage
Nitrogen purge packing is most often used to remove oxygen from the space at the head of the container or bottle just before the container is packaged, capped or sealed. The purge is also used to fortify brittle bottles. But still, the overall aim of most nitrogen purge systems is to remove oxygen, eliminating the effects of oxygen on the product.
For example, packages in the Food and Beverage Industry invariably contain expiration or use-by dates, after which the product may no longer be safe for consumption. Very often, the influence of oxygen on these products results in their rapid decay. Ridding the product of headspace oxygen can extend the expiration date and decrease product waste or spoilage.
Removing product oxygen may have the added benefit of helping to preserve the natural texture, color, and flavor of a product. Generally speaking, nitrogen purge packing can expand the useful life of many different products. These benefits extend to any product on which oxygen may have a negative effect and is not limited only to foods and beverages or just liquids.
The question of whether a nitrogen purge system is essential to your business depends on how exposure to oxygen will affect the products you offer. Extending shelf life is your goal and is most often the primary objective of nitrogen purging. If you are uncertain as to whether your line will benefit from adding such a service, the experts at JIT Services are always available to discuss this option and other value-added services we offer.