How to identify food-grade packaging bags

August 09, 2023

        Packaging bags for food provide convenience to our lives and diversify our products. They can also be used to hold our food now. As we all know, food comes directly into our mouths, so food-related materials must also be paid attention to food safety issues. 

        How to identify bags made of food-grade materials? Let's discuss this topic together today. First of all, we must know what is food-grade packaging bags?

        Food-grade packaging bags refer to plastic packaging bags used for food packaging that meet hygienic standards. They are non-toxic, odorless and degradable without containing heavy metals, carcinogens and pollution of the food.

        Whether food-grade packaging bags reach food grade is mainly a question of raw materials. Food-grade plastics are produced under purified conditions. It is required that the plastic itself is non-toxic, and there are in fact not many varieties. PET, non-toxic PVC, food-grade PE, PP, etc. are always used. 

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Types of food grade plastic packaging bags

        At present, the common food-grade plastic packaging bags on the market are: PE (polyethylene) packaging bags; PP (polypropylene) packaging bags; PET (polyester) packaging bags, etc.

        These plastic packaging bags can meet the requirements of food packaging, and have passed the hygienic inspection and can be used safely. These food-grade plastic packaging bags have been widely used in the food industry, such as: fresh-keeping packaging for fresh fruits and vegetables, meat tips, etc.; packaging for hard candy, chocolate, rice, etc.

So how do we distinguish which are food-grade packaging bags and which are not?

The first is by understanding the standards that food packaging bags meet.

        Food-grade plastic packaging bags must meet the following standards:

        In China, materials must comply with GB4806.1-2016 "Safety of Food Contact Materials"; production processes must comply with GB/T 10004 2008 "Standards for Plastic Food Packaging Materials and Products"

The second is by looking at the characteristics of the packaging bags:

        The surface of the packaging bags needs to be smooth, free from peculiar smell and obvious scratches. If the sense of touching on the bags is not smooth, especially sticky bags, they must not be food-grade packaging bags and cannot be used to hold food.

        If it is a transparent packaging bag, it can be judged by the color depth. If the color is too darker, it may be more toxic. In addition, through the "smell" method. If the peculiar smell is too serious, it may be added additives or colorants.

        Of course, some food-grade packaging bags will also have some signs on them, such as the triangle mark with three circular arrows, and the numbers in the triangle mark. This is a set of plastic marking schemes released by the American Industry Association (SPI) in 1988. They attached a triangular recycling mark to plastic products, and used numbers 1 to 7 and English abbreviations to refer to the type of resin used in the plastic. Among them, plastic products marked with the number "5" can be heated in a microwave oven.

        Packaging bags need to undergo strict inspection and testing to ensure compliance with national safety standards for food packaging. When using them, you need to pay more attention to the fact that different materials and specifications need to be chosen based on different food packaging bags so as to avoid adverse effects on food. At the same time, they are also necessary to strictly abide by the relevant requirements and regulations of food packaging during use to ensure food safety and hygiene.

        China has very strict requirements for food-grade packaging bags, and has issued many laws and regulations to identify methods for food-grade packaging bags. Therefore, in recent years, the food packaging bags produced in China are higher than international standards, and are also sold well in various countries.

        In all, food grade packaging bags is a kind of safe, hygienic and reliable food packaging materials, which are widely used in the food industry. When using them, it’s necessary to choose packaging bags that meet the standards, and strictly abide by relevant requirements and regulations to ensure food safety and hygiene.

Sustainability issues in food packaging

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        Although food-grade packaging bags can meet the hygienic and safety requirements of food packaging, with the continuous improvement of global environmental awareness, the impact of packaging waste on the environment has also attracted people's attention.

        Therefore, the sustainability of food packaging has also become one of the hot spots that people pay more attention to. In this context, the development and application of degradable plastic packaging materials are becoming more and more important.

        At present, degradable materials have also been widely used in the field of food packaging, such as starch packaging bags, polylactic acid packaging bags, etc. These degradable materials can effectively reduce environmental pollution and gradually become a new trend in food packaging.

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