Project - Packaging for microwave use

Alexander  Bardenshtein

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Project - Packaging for microwave use

Better packaging for ready made microwaveable food

Project start March 2009. Expected completion March 2012.

The project is completed.

The purpose of this project is to develop packaging for use in microwave ovens that can elevate the complexity of such dishes allowing them to be more interesting and a far better culinary experience than offered today. This can be achieved by developing and combining three well-known technologies, namely; steam, susceptor and aluminium. The aim is to develop a type of packaging allowing all supermarket products to be placed directly in a microwave oven from which a complete meal can be served in minutes. This meal could include boiled components e.g. casseroles with meat & vegetables, or fried / baked components e.g. breaded fish fillets or bread itself, as well as cold components such as salads or vegetables. Apart from the development of packaging for this system, the project will also include practical development programs in which to test and demonstrate the package systems. 

The market for pre-packaged microwaveable foods has experienced rapid growth the last few years, with Denmark as a noticeable exception. Growth in Western Europe is on average over 6% per year, whilst growth within typical Danish export markets are even bigger, for instance, Germany is nearly 8% per year. Therefore, the project is of huge strategic importance to the export of Danish foodstuffs. 

The project will deliver both practical product concepts for pre-packaged dishes and user orientated guidelines for industry, detailing ideal preparation techniques and choice of packaging type for the diverse food types.

 

Participants

  • Ministry of Food, Agriculture and Fisheries
  • The Danish Technological Institute, Packaging & Transport industries have developed, tested and advised upon the subject of packaging for more than 50 years. The packaging section only first became an approved technological service institute on January 1st 1966, under the title, The Packaging Institute, on January 1st 1991 this Institute merged with The Technological Institute. More than 60% of all activities in the packaging section go towards optimizing foodstuff packaging. Refrigeration technologies have, with success, used FEM-calculation models for the cooling and freezing of foodstuffs. 
  • Royal Greenland bestows its name to some of the best fish and seafood products in the world, where freshness, taste, quality and respect for the environment is combined with a constant desire to make their products more user friendly for the consumer, without compromising taste. Royal Greenland participates because innovation is of extreme importance in continually offering the consumer new and good food experiences. 
  • Kohberg has developed from being a rye bread bakery to a manufacturer of every conceivable type of bread, both in Denmark and abroad. Kohberg has, therefore, great experience in the development and production of all corn and flour based products. Kohberg participate in this project as they are extremely interested in the development potential of products that are easy to handle in bake off boutiques and for the consumer while simultaneously minimizing waste.
  • Amcor Flexibles Denmark participate in this project as a specialist within a broad range of plastic (rigid & flexible). Amcor develop steam venting system for use on pouches and lidding materials. Used for releasing steam during microwave cooking of food, without the need to pierce the packaging, preserving nutrients and taste.
  • Færch Plast takes part in the project because the firm possesses a wealth of knowledge concerning plastic packaging for ready-made microwaveable dishes. They can supply samples of existing products for testing, measurement and lab research. Færch Plast can also contribute with data and materials for new development and concept solutions, as well as manufacture and testing of prototypes.
  • TrykkoPack - Mammens Emballage (Mammens packaging)

Contribute with their knowledge of developing packaging for ready-made foodstuffs. The firm has worked intensely with susceptor technology since 1988, which has resulted in many patents. The firm participates as they have a great interest in further development of this technology especially with regards to browning meat and bread products in a microwave oven.