Systech Illinois, which makes gas analysis instruments, has partnered with Ultrapharm gluten-free bakery to monitor its modified atmosphere packs (MAP).
The bakery, which first produced a product line for coeliac sufferers in 1993, and makes food such as Marks&Spencer gluten free crumpets and seeded bread, will monitor its MAP using Gaspace Advance technology at its quality control laboratory in Wales, UK.
The oxygen and carbon dioxide headspace analyser will check the packaging at regular intervals to see if it is sealed properly and test the inert atmosphere for maximum shelf life.
Beth Faulkner, marketing manager, Systech Illinois, told FoodProductionDaily this is the first time it has partnered with a gluton-free bakery.
“We also test packs for Tulip (Danepack), one of the largest producers of pre-packed bacon in the UK and Whitworths’ dried fruit and fruit snacks,” she said.
“We are always looking at technological advances to make the instruments better and we will be launching a new product in this area at the end of the year.”
Faulkner said the company attended its first exhibition to expand in the Middle East this year, at Arablab 2014 for analytical instruments, in Dubai (March 17-20) and it will have a stand at Interpack in Düsseldorf, Germany in May.
“The European market was effected quite badly by the economic recession, in Spain and Germany for example, so we have been looking at opportunities to grow our products in China and the Middle East,” she said.
“We opened a sales office in China in 2009 and expanded this recently by establishing a technical service centre there.”
The Gaspace Advance features a probe which is inserted into a pack and the results are shown on an LCD display as a percentage of oxygen or carbon dioxide.
“We custom-make instruments for different applications,” added Faulkner.
“It’s important to test MAP for the shelf life of a product so that it is kept looking as it should to meet consumer demand. As packaging changes we have to change the way we test them with our instruments.”
Ultrapharm opened a gluten-free bakery in 2005 in Poland to serve the European market. The site specialises in MAP to achieve a longer shelf life of up to six months and the process of freezing bread, rolls and filled pastries and pies.
From the Polish manufacturing site, 95% of the bakery products are exported to Italy, Germany, France, UK and Ireland.
Systech Illinois has oxygen permeation and water vapour permeation analyzers for packaging film, finished package and PET bottles.
It also provides a range of gas analysis instruments which measure moisture, oxygen, carbon dioxide, nitrogen and other gases.