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Seafood Packaging Applications
Since oxygen speeds up the process of spoilage, Modified Atmosphere Packaging, or MAP, lowers or eliminates oxygen inside the packaging. The air in the package is flushed with gas mixtures that help extend the product’s shelf life. Some common gases used are carbon dioxide, oxygen, and nitrogen. Nitrogen is used to prevent oxidation and helps prevent package collapse. MAP can be done on thermoformers, tray sealers and flow wrappers.
Vacuum packing is a method of packaging that removes air and all of its contaminants from the package prior to sealing. On thermoformers, this method involves creating a cavity by heating and forming the film into a desired shape, then sealing the package. Vacuum packaging can be done on thermoformers, tray sealers and flow wrappers.
Both films are sealed over the entire surface, with specially designed films used on the top layer to enhance appearance. Self liquid retention prevents the product’s exudation, delaying microbial growth. The product can also be displayed vertically. Skin packaging can be done on thermoformers and tray sealers.
Flow packing can be horizontal, using a single film coil with three weldings: two cross-weldings and one longitudinal welding. It can also be vertical, with machines forming a tube of film around a product and creating a longitudinal seal along the pack, and another two transversal ones. This technology is completely hygienic with high production requirements.
Shrink film can be used for fresh or frozen products. A 10K breathable film can be used for fresh fish for a sealed, leak resistant package. A standard polyolefin has holes to allow the film to shrink, and is used on frozen product.
Once used mainly in the meat packaging industry, case-ready packaging is now starting to catch on in the fish and seafood market. Using modified atmosphere, master bag flow wrapping and other techniques, fish and seafood can be packaged at a central location and distributed to retail stores, ready to place on the shelves.
Seafood Packaging Machines
Seafood Packaging Videos
Fresh salmon packaged on ULMA flow wrapping machine
Whole crabs packaged on ULMA TFS thermoforming machine
Salmon packaged on G. Mondini Trave tray sealing machine, using skin packaging technology on an aluminum tray
Tuna packaged on G. Mondini Trave tray sealing machine
Frozen fish fillets packaged on ULMA vertical bagging machine