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Uflex Reports Film with Water and Oxygen Barriers

NOIDA, INDIA | Uflex, a global flexible packaging company, announces Flexfresh, an Equilibrium Modified Atmospheric Packaging, (EMAP) said to “maintain consistent oxygen and carbon dioxide inside the bag during the shelf life of fresh produce,” according to Ashok Chaturvedi, chairman and managing director, Uflex Limited.

“During the initial phase of trials,” he says, “the technical team came up with the nuances of tropical produce and felt that the traditional polymers being used for shelf life extension of fresh produce may not work. Their logic was that most polymers available were either good barriers to oxygen or water, and it is critical to have a polymer which could offer the precise requirements of both oxygen and water barriers. Also, for products that perspired heavily, it was found that the MAP did not work due to higher CO2 inside the bag changing the organoleptic of the produce.” 

A box of Indian pomegranates is ready for shipment from India in Flexfresh Equilibrium Modified Atmospheric Packaging

This is critical for fresh produce packaging, he says, because the oxygen needs to be maintained to keep the product in aerobic conditions. During transpiration, humidity gets released and condenses inside the bag causing fungal and bacterial infections on the produce.

Chaturvedi says, “Thus [we] conceived Flexfresh with…oxygen and water barrier for packaging fresh produce. While maintaining the humidity inside the bag at 98%, this technology keeps the product absolutely dry without allowing condensation of the humidity. This results in very low weight loss of the produce as it continues to breathe in hydrated oxygen available inside the bag. The film provides good release characteristics of CO2 emitted by the produce. This ensures that the produce in a few cases could be protected naturally from [certain] diseases. [And] it is biodegradable by composting, so it complies with all international regulations for overall migration (EC 1935/2004), reaches compliance (EC 1907/2006), and qualifies for biodegradation under DIN EN 13432 (2000-12).”

Company says it is in the process of developing the film across packaging formats. It is currently available as liner bags in 5kg and 10Kg standard international sizes, flow wraps, f/f/s film, and lidding film.

Uflex reports that an Indian pomegranate grower has been supplying its produce to Europe. The moisture inside the pomegranate crown led to fungal growth, and this was restricting the company from expanding its exports from India. After extensive trials with Flexfresh, more than 100 containers of pomegranate have already been exported to Europe to leading supermarkets, reportedly with excellent quality upon arrival.

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