Shopping For Your Favorite Snack Foods
It’s easy to visit your local grocery store to grab the food items you need for a family meal or a treat for yourself. You’ll notice all the different storage techniques for different foods, including our favorite snacks.
As we turn our attention to healthier eating, many of us grab healthy snack options like fruits, vegetables, and nuts. More health organizations are encouraging us to reach for nuts for their “good” fat content, protein source, and as a heart-healthy alternative to other snack options.
When we pull back the lid to a can of cashews, or open a sealed bag of peanuts, we disrupt a carefully curated environment.
What is Modified Atmosphere Packaging (MAP)?
Modified Atmosphere Packaging (MAP) is the method of using certain gases to create a sterile environment in food packages. This trick increases the snack’s shelf life so they arrive fresh in grocery stores.
Environments that are rich in oxygen are breeding grounds for bacteria such as mildew and mold. Peanuts and other nuts such as almonds, walnuts, and pistachios, can go stale fast if left exposed to oxygen for too long.
Injecting of food-grade nitrogen and removing oxygen significantly slows decay by inhibiting oxidation and the growth of microbes.
Before the Store
Peanut and nut packagers face a unique problem: many nut varieties are found all over the world, and need to reach consumers just as fresh as when they were picked.
Our favorite tree nuts and peanuts come from all over the world, such as Africa, Central Asia, the Middle East, and South America. Although the locations are different, much of the process overall is the same: nuts are sorted and cleaned after they’re harvested, and then transferred into their packaging after those long processes are completed.
Modified atmosphere packaging (MAP) machines, such as vertical form fillers, are equipped with injection nozzles that introduce food-grade nitrogen gas into product bags as it is filled, blanketing the peanuts and nuts with nitrogen.
This nitrogen blanket not only adds a protective barrier from oxygen, but it also forces as much of it out of the bag as possible. This process helps to not only increase the snack’s shelf-life, but also to:
Deliver a quality product directly to the consumer
Prevent food waste caused by food spoilage
Saved costs on production (that aren’t lost when product is lost)
Nitrogen Gas for Packaging
Many companies purchase nitrogen directly from gas companies in cylinders, which must be stored at the processing/packaging facilities. Often there are safety issues associated with their storage and handling.
The finite number of cylinders create the ever possibility of running out of nitrogen gas in the middle of your production schedule. More food and beverage packaging companies are realizing that expensive, long-term contracts with gas companies are not the best option.
The best and most cost-effective solution is to generate your own supply of nitrogen gas on-site and on-demand using a nano nitrogen gas generator. This creates a reliable,
1. Purities of up to 99.999%
2. Generate the nitrogen gas you need, only when you need it and at the purity you require
3. Food-grade nitrogen is generated on-site so you will never run out of nitrogen gas again
4. Payback is typically between 6 to 24 months (about 2 years)
5. Easy installation with minimum cost and no disruption
6. Guaranteed performance