Italian packaging manufacturer ILIP intends to continue its research partnership with the University of Bologna – furthering its efforts to learn more about the effects of its packaging on the fresh produce it protects.
The Bazzano-based company entered into the partnership with the University Of Bologna’s Department of Fruit Trees and Wood Plant Sciences in September 2011. The aim of deal was to improve the technical and functional features of its packaging products.
Researchers at the Department of Fruit Trees and Wood Plant Sciences have conducted two trials to-date.
The first study examined the use of transparent r-PET punnets for table grapes, establishing the vital role played by ventilation holes in ensuring the maintained quality of packaged produce.
The packaging provider will use the finding to make its products more effective in terms of protecting and preserving the encased produce.
ILIP marketing manager Roberto Zanichelli revealed that the results of the partnership’s second trial would be available soon, but remained tight-lipped about the exact details of the trial.
Zanichelli told FoodProductionDaily.com that following a successful first year, ILIP intends to continue its work with the university.
“Why not?” said Zanichelli. “We started this partnership with the University of Bologna’s Department of Fruit Trees and Wood Plant Sciences because we wanted to study the relationship between our packaging and the products they protect, and so far its ben very interesting.”
The first test examined different models of transparent r-PET punnets for table grapes. Researchers compared how the packaging influenced cooling time, temperature and how the packaging maintained the quality of the product.
Researchers confirmed the fundamental role played by ventilation holes in the upper part of the punnets, which allow the packaged product to maintain its quality for longer.
The findings of trial number two will be revealed soon, along with the details of a third produce-packaging study.
“We haven’t decided yet, but in the next month we should finalise our new trials,” he said.
“This partnership is part of our latest corporate sustainability efforts,” said Zanichelli. “We want to be responsible for the products we manufacture once they leave the factory.”
“We are looking at the interaction of our packaging products and the food it protects to improve the quality and technical features of our packaging products. This will hopefully improve the shelf life of the food inside our packaging.”
Zanichelli added that through its findings, ILIP hopes to help reduce the high levels of food waste caused by inferior packaging.
“We want to help by improving our packaging to keep the food it protects safer for longer,” he said. “Through this partnership, we can help to reduce food waste and the environmental impact of the complete product.”