The Influence of Modified Atmosphere Packaging on the Quality of Selected Ready-to-eat Foods

Raija Ahvenainen, Eija Skyttä, Raija-Liisa Kivikataja

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review


    The microbiological and sensory shelf-life of miscellaneous ready-to-eat foods: ham pizza, mayonnaise-based potato salad and vegetable salad with herring, were studied in modified atmosphere packages and compared with those of air-packed products. The main benefit from the gas packaging of pizzas was retarding the growth of mould and the discoloration of pizzas. However, nitrogen alone could not prevent the development of mould; at least 20% (v/v) carbon dioxide was needed. To some extent, gas packaging also delayed the microbiological and sensory changes in vegetable salad with herring.
    From the microbiological point of view, the retarding of the growth of yeast was the most significant factor, particularly in an atmosphere containing CO2. With regard to sensory quality, modified atmosphere packaging improved the retention of taste, especially that of herring. However, modified atmosphere packaging increased the sensory shelf-life of salad by only a few days.
    The shelf-life of mayonnaise-based potato salad could not be improved by gas packaging. On the contrary, carbon dioxide in high concn (≥20%) caused a strong, off-odour and off-taste in potato salad
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)139-148
    JournalLWT - Food Science and Technology
    Issue number2
    Publication statusPublished - 1989
    MoE publication typeNot Eligible


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