Food Engineering/Manufacturing/Packaging

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Question
QUESTION: I read that the Grocery Manufacturers of America is opposing labeling requirements for food packaging that uses nano-materials.
Do you know anything about nano-materials in packaging?
How are they used?
Do they contaminate the food?
Are they safe as they are used for the consumer?

Thanks for any light you can shed on this,
Michael

ANSWER: Hello Michael

Here is what I know about nano particles

Nano particles are microscopic particles less than 100 nanometers in size. Actually, calling them “microscopic” might be an overstatement as one nanometer is equal to one billionth of a meter. They’re created by breaking down much larger substances (by subjecting them to high heat, for instance) and have multiple biomedical, optical and electronic applications.

Nano particles have been used, more and more, in food packaging, pesticides, cosmetics, clothing, toys, kitchenware and more over the past few years. They have been considered nothing less than revolutionary for the food industry as they can make foods brighter, enhance their flavor and keep foods fresh longer. Nano particles made from silver can suppress the growth of dangerous organisms and are being used by farmers.

FDA has not banned them yet and the major concern is the toxicity from Nano Particles which could harmful for human consumption. If the food is not in direct contact with the these than there is no danger of using them.

Best regards

Jim

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: Hi again Jim,

Are there any safety or contamination studies that you know of on the use of nano-materials in food packaging?
Does any contamination with nano-materials occur in the food packaged like this?
I hadn't heard about farmers using them to control the growth of pests. Do you have any links you can share that have more information?

Thanks again for your time and expertise,
Michael

ANSWER: Hi Michael

I have not done or heard of any safety studies related to nano particles in food packaging. This is a very fresh subject for food packaging.

As far as the inner surface of the package containing Nano particle is not in direct contact with
the food or beverage packed in that package there should be no contamination from the nano particles.

You can log on to internet and use "Nano Particles in Food Packaging" in you browser and you will get all the information you need to understand Nano Particles and their functionality.

I am not sure what you purpose is to explore Nano Particles and their functionality.

Hope this helps

Best regards

Jim

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: Hi Jim,

I am a little confused about your answers.
You apparently don't have any information about food packaging containing nano-particles, contamination or safety and you should have said that in your original answer.
If the food is packaged in packaging containing nano-particles, then OF COURSE it is in contact with the packaging. Nano-particles are small enough to simply pass through most packaging materials.
You seem to imply that nano-particles, when added to ordinary packaging, makes them impervious to outside bacteria, fungus, insects possibly even humidity... but you don't say that.

You also state "They have been considered nothing less than revolutionary for the food industry as they can make foods brighter, enhance their flavor and keep foods fresh longer". But don't say if the particles have been added to food to do those things or if added to the packaging. Nor do you clarify waht action of the nano-particles affects foods in those special packages.

Finally you question my motives for asking about nano-particles (You stated - "I am not sure what you purpose is to explore Nano Particles and their functionality")... why would you say that?

OBVIOUSLY from my questions anyone can tell what I am asking about and why I am asking... Is it safe for people to eat foods packaged in material infused with nano-particles?

What other "purpose" are you implying I might have?

I think you should have stated you didn't have the expertise to answer my questions, and left it at that.

What was your motivation to answer questions and then state "log on to internet and use "Nano Particles in Food Packaging" in you browser and you will get all the information you need to understand Nano Particles and their functionality".

I already know that. The purpose of All Experts is for individuals to have a conversation with people who have expertise in these areas... not to be told to go search on the internet for our answers.

Michael Polidori

Answer
Hi Michael

Thanks for your reply and I am not urge why you are confused. From the very beginning I wrote that is what I know.

You can have packaging with Nano particles on the outside wall of the packages which will not come in contact with the food and or beverage. Overall FDA has not banned use of Nano particles use in food and beverage packages yet.

Right now I am working to incorporate nano particular technology into our package for a new product.

Sorry to disappoint you with my response.

Regards

Jim

Food Engineering/Manufacturing

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Jim

Expertise

All processing and packaging related questions

Experience

Have worked with all possibile processing and packaging systems used in food industry. I have over 30 years experience related to Food and Beverage manufacturing.

Organizations
Institute of Food Technology American Institute of Chemical Engineering

Publications
Holder of two patents

Education/Credentials
Masters in Chemistry BS in Chemistry Bs and in Chemical Engineering

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