India-based flexible packaging solution Uflex, along with the Netherlands’ Perfotec, has conducted trials of Flexfresh liner bags in open top corrugated boxes with an aim to extend shelf life for papaya.

Developed by Uflex, the Flexfresh liner bags aim to improve product availability and provide better shelf life for fresh produce.

In order to expand the reach of its Flexfresh liner bags, both companies have been working with fresh produce growers to maximise shelf life using an active modified atmosphere packaging (AMAP) solution.

The trials were performed in India and Holland, and featured participation from leading growers and importers.

The AMAP solutions were produced to ship fresh produce via sea instead of air, in order to ensure continuity in the supply chain and make the product affordable for consumers.

By reducing expenses incurred by air freight, the solution also aims to reduce weight.

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Uflex Flexfresh vice-president N Siva Shankaran said: “Trials were conducted with 60 x 40 Flexfresh Liner Bags in open top corrugated boxes. The product was packed in semi-ripe condition in warm condition in the liner bags and were hermetically closed and moved to the Cold Store.

"By using Flexfresh Liner Bags, the product remains dry and registers a very low weight loss, due to the hydrated environment inside the bag."

“By using Flexfresh Liner Bags, the product remains dry and registers a very low weight loss, due to the hydrated environment inside the bag.

“Flexfresh does not allow condensation due to its unique proprietary formulation giving a major relief to exporters against Bacterial and Fungal infections. With the biodegradability of the Liner Bag, it is a perfect sustainable solution.”

The company said that growers could achieve a shelf life of 30 days for papaya using the Flexfresh liner bags.

Asia currently produces more than 50% of the world’s papaya, followed by South America with nearly 20% of the production.

The US imports around 200,000t of papaya from South America a year.

Image: Papaya packed in Flexfresh liner bags. Photo: courtesy of Uflex.