Introduction to Principles of Food Packaging
The Coca-Cola Company, which is situated in Georgia, Atlanta, is an American Cosmopolitan Drink Company, and producer, merchant, and dealer of non-alcoholic drink focus and syrups. The business is recognized for its flagship creation Coca-Cola, devised by pharmacist John Smith in 1886 in Georgia. The Coca-Cola recipe and product were acquired by Asa Griggs Candler in 1889, who integrated the company in 1892. The corporation has managed a licensed distribution structure since 1889, where The Coca-Cola Company just manufactures syrup contemplate, which is retailed to a range of bottlers all over the world who seize restricted territories.
Packaging material and process of packaging
Apart from bottles, Coca-Cola uses aluminum cans for their packaging. 90% of the soft drink companies are using aluminum cans for their beverage packaging (Yuvaraju, Subramanyam and Rao, 2014). Aluminum is made from an ore recognized as bauxite. The raw materials of the beverage cans are 95% aluminum, 0.4% iron, 1% magnesium, 0.2% silicon, 1% manganese and 0.15% copper. The process of making the can begins with a 76cm thick aluminum bar rolled into a thin sheet. Then the sheets are cut in the form of a circle to make the sides and base of the can. These blanks are 14cm in diameter. Now an 8.9cm cup is made and moved into a different machine. A folder grasps the cup just in place, and a blow lowered quickly into the cup remakes it to a length of about 6.6cm. The stature of the cup rises concurrently from 3.3 to 5.7 cm. The blow then shoves the cup next to three ironing rings, which widen and slender the cup walls. Then a further punch pushes up against the bottom of the cup, rooting the bottom to swell inward. The cap is made of a little dissimilar alloy than the aluminum for the bottom and walls of the can.
The cap is incised to a thickness of 5.3cm and the middle of the cap is stretched slightly and pinched by a machine to give the shape of a rivet. The pull tag, a separate section of metal, is included below the rivet and protected by it (Kirwan, 2011). Then the cover is notched up so that when the label is pulled by the customer, the metal will remove easily and abscond the official opening. After the whole process, now the can is prepared to be filled with Coca-Cola. The can is alleged firmly against the place of a filling machine, and the drink is transferred in. Then after adding the lid, the can is ready for marketing. Coca-Cola mainly uses aluminum cans because they are recyclable, very light-weighted and inexpensive. Therefore, it helps to reduce processing costs and shipping costs.
Tests required for packaging
There are a few tests required to know the quality of packaging of a beverage. These tests are:-
Testing of cans
Structural rigidity of the cans is tested so that the cans won't break when packed with the beverage. The cans also go through burst testing. Dimensional capacity and structural reliability are also checked through these tests.
Testing of seals
The seals are carefully tested to certify their capability of giving the essential service. The integrity of the seals is a vital part of the packaging. If the seals are stronger than the can, then the can will break apart (Gomes et al., 2014).
The strength of the seal is tested by peel test. Peel tests maintain the strength balance between the seal and the can. After all the tests, the beverage can get the approval of marketing.
Legal requirements for packaging
According to FSSAI the additives which are allowed in beverages are:- acidifying agents (lactic acid), antioxidants (ascorbic acid), preservatives (sorbic acid), artificial sweeteners (aspartame, sucralose), colours (titanium oxide), thickening agents, flavour enhancer, antifoaming agents (dimethyl polysiloxane) etc.
Under the law of FSSAI, the label should carry- name of the beverage; list of ingredients; name and full address of the retailer; nutritional data; net content by volume or weight; manufacturing date; batch no; best before date; specification of flavours; veg/non-veg logo etc.
Non-conformances and their solutions
The packaging of a beverage is very important, and it can face many problems. The most common issues that arise in packaging are:-
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Issues with Label information
Sometimes manufacturers give false information in the label so that they can attract the customers. For example, low fat, low calories, 100% pure juice, etc. To solve this problem, some special steps are needed to be taken. The marketers have to be more honest about their products. In the present time, some legislation is formed to prevent this kind of misleading information (Natural and organic food and beverage trends in the U.S., 2011).
Problems with packing safety
Customers always show their concerns for the safety of the packaging. Sometimes marketer uses packaging full of chemicals, which are not safe for customers. To rectify this issue, retailers must avoid this type of packaging which requires an excess amount of chemical and are not tamper proof.
Some retailers promote their products as eco-friendly products. But in reality, the products and their packaging harm the environment. To solve this problem, Coca-Cola uses aluminum cans which are totally recyclable. It does not affect the environment in a bad way. The recycling power of aluminum also helps to reduce the expenditure of the company (Arnold, Beauchamp and Bowie, 2013).
Issues with packaging graphics
It is identified that many brands use pictures on their labels which do not signify the original product. They use fake pictures to attract customers, but the product ultimately disappoints the customer. That is why, to avoid confusion, Coca-Cola uses original pictures of their products. When the products are testified in the lab, they take pictures of the beverage and then print it and add to the label.
Thus the Coca-Cola Company do the packaging of their product. All these processes are extremely necessary for any food or beverage packaging because the packaging is the only thing that consumers see before buying a sealed product.
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