Analysis of the influence of packaging on food safety and quality control measures from the new food safety law

Food safety is closely related to people's livelihood. In recent years, safety accidents such as "melamine", "lean meat extract" and "Sudan Red" have become frequent, and food safety has become an important issue that the government and the people can't avoid. For this long-term and complicated issue, the government launched a heavy blow in 2015, passed a revised draft of the Food Safety Law, claiming that the strictest food safety law in history was formally implemented on October 1, 2015. The revised Food Safety Law has established the most stringent management procedures, retrospective mechanisms, and penalties for food production and business operations, and strengthened the security responsibilities of business entities, including third-party platforms for online food transactions. Criminal responsibility is punished according to law for acts that constitute crimes, and accountability for local government officials and supervisors is also increased.
Throughout the food production process, packaging is the only barrier between food and the outside world, and it is also the last level of food safety. If there is a problem with its quality, food safety is even more of an empty discussion. It can be seen that the role of packaging in food safety cannot be underestimated. Close reading of the Food Safety Law, Article 34 of which prohibits production and management of foods, food additives contaminated with packaging materials, containers, and transportation tools, and Article 46. Production from production processes, equipment, storage, packaging, etc. The key links to ensure that the production of food safety standards for foods and foods all require quality control from the perspective of food packaging. A detailed analysis of its impact and its quality control methods is now carried out.
Variety of food products is becoming more and more abundant, and the corresponding food packaging materials are different, such as plastic film, plastic composite film, paper-plastic composite film, co-extruded film, aluminized film, aluminum foil, aluminum foil composite film, etc., and various types of packaging containers Among them, plastic packaging materials account for more than 90% of all food packaging materials, and their materials, properties, and processes are important factors influencing food safety, basically concentrating on the following three aspects:
The impact of additives in the production process of plastic packaging materials on food safety The requirements of Article 41 of the newly amended Food Safety Law require that food-related products with high risks for packaging materials directly in contact with food should be licensed according to the relevant national industrial products. The license management regulations implement production licenses. It is not unreasonable for the safety law to focus on the specification of packaging materials that directly contact foods because plastics, rubber, paper, metals, paints, and other food contact materials will be added with antioxidants, stabilizers, plasticizers, and thinners during processing. And other additives to meet various packaging needs. In the course of contact with foods, especially oils and fats or acidic foods, the molecules migrate into the food through the material, affecting the safety of the food, and thus pose a threat to human health. In this regard, the State has formulated relevant standards to regulate the amount and method of detection of the migration of plastic packaging into food, such as GB 9685-2008 “Standards for the Use of Additives for Food Containers and Packaging Materials” and GB9683-88. Hygienic Standards for Food Packaging Bags, GB 4805-1994 "Sanitary Standards for Epoxy Phenolic Coatings on Food Cans". In the standard, the indicator of evaporation residue is used to measure the leachables of packaging materials.
Evaporation residue is an indicator for detecting the quality of chemical substances that may be precipitated during contact with foods such as water, acidic substances, alcohols, and oils and fats during the use of food contact materials. Evaporation residue indicators are used to assess various substances in packaging during a certain period of time. The total amount of food migration, expressed in mg/L. The simulant is typically distilled water, 4% acetic acid, 20% or 65% ethanol and n-hexane. Compared with the random errors that may easily occur in manual testing, it is recommended to use automatic instrument testing methods, such as the ERT-01 Evaporative Residue Constant Weight Meter, which can reduce human intervention in the drying, drying, weighing, and other test processes, and ensures that The weight test process of the sample has been in a relatively stable environment, avoiding the influence of the test environment on the test results.
The impact of adhesives and printing inks used in plastic composite packaging materials on food safety On the one hand, adhesives used in composite packaging materials crack at high temperatures to generate toxic and hazardous substances. On the other hand, some poor suppliers will Toluene or xylenes harmful substances are added to the solvent in the adhesive to increase the cancer risk of the packaged food. In addition, the current ink used in the domestic packaging and printing industry is mainly composed of a polyester resin, toluene, butanone as a main solvent, and solvent evaporation as a drying method. Since the solvent and the solvent evaporation rates of toluene, butanone, and ethyl esters contained in adhesives and inks are not the same, this results in various residual solvent values. At the same time, if the solubility of the solvent to the resin molecules is good, the release of the resin molecules to the solvent is poor, which also results in a large amount of solvent residues. On this basis, with the increase in the thickness of the adhesive and ink coating, the residual solvent will increase. When the residual amount of solvent exceeds a certain limit, it will migrate inward and outward at the same time, and if it enters the contents of the package, it will be contaminated, thereby causing harm to the health of consumers.
The State has made stringent requirements for solvent residue indicators for food packaging packaging: (1) Total residue, including ethanol, acetone, iso-acetone, butanone, ethyl acetate, butanol, isopropyl acetate, butyl acetate Benzene, toluene, xylene and other 11 kinds. (2) Residues of benzene solvents include benzene, toluene, and xylene. GB/T10004-2008 "Plastic composite film for packaging, bag dry compounding, extrusion compounding" requires a total residual content of ≤ 5.0mg/m2, benzene solvent can not be detected, the detection limit is 0.01 mg/m2. Since solvent residues in composite packaging are generally produced in inks, solvents, and adhesives, and are closely related to the film itself, production processes, and the environment, it is difficult for companies to conduct comprehensive controls. Therefore, the detection of solvent residues in composite packaging is particularly important. Related companies can use the gas chromatograph for packaging materials testing to conduct daily inspections. According to the test data, they can adjust production raw materials and processes accordingly to reduce the occurrence of excessive solvent.
Physical and mechanical properties of packaging materials and packaging sealing issues Impact on food safety Packaging materials are the bases of packaging containers. The application of these materials in food packaging requires good properties in terms of thickness, barrier properties, and mechanical properties. Thickness is the most basic of all properties. Maintaining a uniform thickness of the packaging material not only helps dairy companies save production costs, but also controls the uniform performance of all parts of the packaging material. There are many test methods for thickness. According to current international and domestic standards, surface contact thickness measurement is a specified thickness measurement method. In addition, the mechanical properties of packaging materials are also the basic factors related to the important performance of food packaging load-bearing and impact resistance, including tensile strength, elongation at break, peel force, tearing performance, etc. Mature, will be included in the food package material
Control System for daily monitoring.
Barrier property refers to the property of packaging materials to block water vapor and gas infiltration. As we all know, water and oxygen are the main factors that cause food spoilage. Therefore, packaging materials as a barrier material between food and the external environment require very high barrier properties. Because this test requires extremely high precision and accuracy, daily inspections mostly rely on laboratory testing instruments for testing, and then the experimental personnel guide the purchase of different types of food packaging materials based on the difference in the barrier properties of the materials. In addition to water vapor and oxygen penetration through the packaging material, the leakage of the packaging is also a weak link infiltration. For this content, first of all need to confirm the distribution of the leaked parts of the package, it is recommended to use a negative pressure method to do the sealing test, the test step can refer to GB/15171 "soft package sealing performance test method." Second, according to the test results to find leaks frequently, in general, seal leakage is more common. Most modern companies use heat sealing technology to seal, heat sealing time, temperature, pressure is the three major technical indicators to determine the heat sealing effect. Through the use of heat sealing tester and other relevant testing instruments, different technical parameters are tested in the environment of the simulated production line to find the optimal heat sealing process and improve the sealing quality.
In summary, although the impact of packaging materials on food safety is potential, it does not happen all the time. The birth of the new version of the Food Safety Law indicates on the one hand that China's food safety mechanism has reached a new stage. On the other hand, it has also led the quality control of packaging materials into a more rigorous era and escort food safety!

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