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Food safety is perhaps the most daunting concern for manufacturers. They must adhere to some guidelines and standards to stay compliant. Failing to meet them can lead to hefty penalties and reputational damage, the last things you want to encounter.
You may even lose consumer trust and credibility in the long run, so proper packaging safety should be your top priority. Besides safety, you must ensure several factors, such as accuracy of weight and truthful labelling.
Although it sounds like a lot of work, you can rely on a few packaging best practices for pre-packaged food manufacturers.
Eliminating contaminants from food is vital for its safety for human consumption. It is also the mainstay of food safety regulations, which is a crucial requirement for the industry. Integrating product inspection technology into the manufacturing process ensures the detection of contaminants. You can rely on technologies such as X-ray systems and metal detection to identify potential contaminants and reject contaminated products in real-time.
Once you eliminate contaminants from the products, you must set up a sealing process for them. Investing in proper equipment, such as tray sealers, streamlines the packaging process for a pre-packaged food manufacturing unit. Sealing the products with modified atmosphere packaging (MAP) maintains their integrity over time. Look for relevant machines according to the product specifications and scale of operations.
Weight accuracy is another critical factor when it comes to food packaging. Although net content regulations vary, the average weights cannot be less than the amount on the labels.
Some countries require them to be within pre-defined tolerances. You can set up in-line weight-checking technology to inspect product weights at top production speeds. The system can match the actual weight with the one shown on the labels and reject products outside set parameters.
Product labels are as significant as the quality and integrity of the food inside the package. They communicate relevant information according to the labelling laws of the market where products will be sold.
Typically, label regulations require them to display the net quantity, ingredient details, and allergen information. Besides these basics, some countries may have additional mandatory requirements. Manufacturers can rely on machine vision inspection technology to check the label content according to pre-programmed criteria.
The technology can also confirm label positioning and readability to match the standard specifications.
Although you may follow the best packaging practices, you may still encounter a regulatory agency visit at some point. Even worse, they may enforce a product recall due to non-compliance. Readiness to prove due diligence in manufacturing and packaging processes can get you out of a problematic situation.
You can use an inspection system to record quality assurance activities in real time. Likewise, advanced data management software can empower you with reliable QA data, which can be shared with regulators if required.
A robust food safety plan can keep your packaging compliant and prevent problems for your business. You can follow these tips to ensure top-quality food products that conform to the requisite standards.
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