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156
FOOD PACKAGING TECHNOLOGY
up to a point, on impact. Impact resistance is improved by an even distribution of glass during container manufacture and subsequent treatment.
• Hygiene – glass surfaces are easily wetted and dried during washing and
cleaning prior to filling.
• Environmental benefits – glass containers are returnable, reusable and
recyclable. Significant savings in container weight have been achieved
by technical advances in design, manufacture and handling.
6.2.1
Glass pack integrity and product compatibility
6.2.1.1 Safety
Migration studies on glass have shown it to be an inert material as regards its
application to packaged foods and, from a health and hygiene viewpoint, it is
regarded as an optimal material for containing food and drinks.
6.2.1.2 Product compatibility
Glass containers are noted for the fact that they enable liquid and solid foods to
be stored for long periods of time without adverse effects on the quality or
flavour of the product.
6.2.2
Consumer acceptability
Market research has indicated that consumers attach a high quality perception
to glass packaged products. Recent findings of a report on consumer perceptions
carried out by The Design Engine, on behalf of Rockware Glass, concluded
that there are five key and largely exclusive benefits for food packaging in
glass (The Design Engine, 2001), namely:
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.3
6.3.1
aesthetic appeal
quality perception
preferred taste
product visibility and associated appetite appeal
resealability.
Glass and glass container manufacture
Melting
Glass is melted in a furnace at temperatures of around 1350°C (2462°F) and is
homogenized in the melting process, producing a bubble-free liquid. The molten glass is then allowed to flow through a temperature controlled channel
(forehearth) to the forming machine, where it arrives via the feeder at the
correct temperature to suit the container to be produced. For general containers,
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