Shelf Life – an overview | ScienceDirect Topics

1 Food shelf-life meanings

Shelf animation is a democratic term in the food industry, where its basic mean is broadly well understood. It has long been a matter of big importance : production organization, transport and distribution, the choice of promotion characteristics, and the definition of the “ best before ” dates are all problems that can be dealt with correctly only by knowing what we define as the ledge life of products. many different professionals have been matter to in the kinetics of food-quality decrease and in experimental and predictive methodologies to estimate the ledge life : food technologists, obviously, but today besides box, logistics, and sustainability experts. actually, in dealing more closely with the problems of ledge life, respective points of position emerge about the ledge liveliness of foods and different definitions of the basic intend of shelf life can be established. Depending on the particular purposes and context, shelf life may be defined from divers points of watch ( see Table 1 ). The most general definition of ledge life is “ the menstruation of fourth dimension from the production and promotion of a product to the indicate at which the product first becomes impossible under defined environmental and distribute conditions ” ( Lee et al., 2008 ). other and more detailed definitions have been proposed for the mean of shelf life ( Nicoli, 2012 ; Robertson, 2010 ). however, flush in its generality, the simpleton and concise definition proposed emphasizes two fundamental points : the target is always the designation of a clock time ( in days, weeks, or months ) and there is no single shelf liveliness for the lapp merchandise. Depending on the define boundary conditions, in fact, we can have different, even very different, shelf lives attributed to an identical food. Another point deserves, furthermore, some care. The address to “ shelf ” intelligibly implies that the term is related to the commercial life of the intersection, therefore to a packaged intersection, delivered through the common routes of distribution, not to a generic, “ natural life. ” table 1. coarse definitions of the diverse shelf-life concepts

Shelf-life type Description
Primary shelf life The period of time from the production and packaging of a product to the point at which the product first becomes unacceptable under defined environmental conditions
Secondary shelf life The period of time after package opening during which a food product maintains an acceptable quality level
Required shelf life The minimum period of storage time that a food product must guarantee to become profitable in the market
Maximum shelf life The maximum period of time that a food product can achieve, using the best available packaging solution
Display shelf life The period of time for which products (particularly fresh produce, meats, and fishes) can be stored under expected or specified conditions of store display

What has been previously defined is frequently indicated as the elementary ledge life, to distinguish it from the secondary shelf biography, which is the period after box afford during which a food product maintains an satisfactory quality level. The secondary ledge life and relate issues have received very little attention in the literature, despite the significant affect on consumers equally well as on food wastage problems ( Nicoli and Calligaris, 2018 ). It is worth noting that comparing primary and secondary shelf life can besides be utilitarian for a roughly appraisal of the protection provided by the packaging and the logistics used in specific circumstances.

In the product and promotion exploitation processes, three related shelf-life concepts have been proposed ( Marsh, 1986 ). Depending chiefly on marketing and logistics considerations, the required ledge life has been defined as the minimum time that a food merchandise must sustain in order to become feasible in the marketplace. The want ledge life is normally the sum of the meter for the intersection to travel till the distribution point, and the prison term for the merchandise to be displayed on the store ’ randomness shelves ( Lee et al., 2008 ). If the primary shelf life is shorter than the required ledge life, better box solutions or better displaying conditions must be used to increase the product shelf life. Redesigning the distribution route might besides be a potential solution. If, on the contrary, the chief shelf animation is longer than the required ledge life, some savings solutions can be put in position : for exemplify, lightening the packaging or using lesser quality and less expensive packaging solutions. Looking at the possible available promotion solutions for a specific intersection, with different levels of auspices against oxygen, moisture, or light, the ideal or maximum shelf life has been theorized. It is, obviously, the maximal ledge liveliness gettable with no limitations in the packaging choices, that is, with the best possible box. last, entirely taking into report the specific needs of the point of sale, the display shelf life has been defined as the time for which products, in particular fresh produce, meats, and fish, can be stored under expected or specified conditions of store display. Nowadays, some box solutions have been designed expressly for this finish, particularly for refrigerated meat display cabinets. In all the proposed different definitions, two concepts have key and critical meanings : the concept of acceptability ( or unacceptability ) and the description of specific limit conditions. It is surely discernible that the words acceptable and unacceptable may have different mean to unlike people in different countries and that different boundary conditions can deeply affect the shelf-life quantification. In other words, as already noticed, there is always a certain amount of subjectivity and discretion in all the shelf-life assessments, however obtained .

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