Shelf Life of Packaged Foodstuffs

Course Coordinator

ECTS points:


Course number:
39849 (PredDipl) 53298 (Dipl)

Course Description


General shelf life analysis requirements. Effect of packaging material on product shelf-life. Shelf-life protocols. Challenge study; Accelerated shelf life testing; Confirmatory storage study; On-going shelf life monitoring. Factors affecting permeation characteristics of packaging materials. Barrier characteristics of packaging materials. Packaging permeation on: gases, water vapour. Permeability ratio (material selectivity). 

Food-package interaction (corrosion, migration: global, specific). Shelf-life with regard to: moisture gain, moisture loss. Evaluation of the rate of oxidation of foods packaged in a semipermeable pouch. The kinetic model. Determination of shelf-life of food stored in frige and refrigerator. Recomended gas content for food packed in the modified atmosphere with regard to product: fresh fruits and vegetables: respiration rate, rate of etilene production. Shelf-life determination: case studies. Tasks definition and allocation. Seminars presentation by students.


  • explain the influence of packaging material and packaging method on the food shelf-life
  • define barrier properties of food packaging material (gas permeability, water vapour permeability) and their influence on the degradation of packed foodstuff
  • define external parameters and their influence on the packed food shelf-life
  • argue the choice of food shelf-life testing method and its applicability with regard to packed food product
  • explain consequences of food/packaging interaction and the possibility to prove this interaction
  • identify and explain the desirable and undesirable characteristics of the shelf-life of certain pakaging material for a specific food product
  • present and explain the protocol for determination of the food shelf-life of the selected food product in the appropriate (adequate) food packaging material
  • explain and argue the possibilities of increasing the validity of the packaged food product