University of Florida

PKG 3103
Food Packaging

Semester Taught - Fall

Catalog Description

Credits: 3

Study of major technical, safety and legislative issues involved in modern food packaging practices. Physical and chemical properties of food packaging materials. Survey of modern packaging techniques for various food types.


CHM 2045

Course Objectives

After successful completion of this course the student will be able to:

  • Research and identify appropriate US food packaging regulations.
  • Critically analyze food packaging approaches with regard to materials, preservation of food quality and safety, costs and benefits.
  • Specify packaging requirements for various types of foods.

Contributions of Course to Meeting the Professional Component for ABET

This course contributes 3 credit hours toward meeting the minimum 48 credit hours approved technical elective credit.

Relationship of Course to Program Outcomes

From the list of (a) through (k) program outcomes listed below, this course addresses outcomes (a), (e), (h).

ABET Program Outcomes

  • (a) Apply knowledge of mathematics, science, and engineering
  • (b) Design and conduct experiments, as well as analyze and interpret data
  • (c) Design a system, component, or process to meet desired needs
  • (d) Function on multi-disciplinary teams
  • (e) Identify, formulate, and solve engineering problems
  • (f) Understand professional and ethical responsibilities
  • (g) Communicate effectively
  • (h) Understand the impact of engineering solutions in a global and societal context
  • (i) Recognize the need for, and engage in life long learning
  • (j) Understand contemporary engineering issues
  • (k) Use the techniques, skills, and modern engineering tools necessary for engineering practice


Bruce A. Welt Ph.D
Office 229 Frazier Rogers Hall
Phone: 352-392-1864 ext. 229
Course emal through Sakai

Material/Supply Fees


Class Materials Required

Textbook Required


Recommended Reading

  • Food Packaging – Principles and Practices (2nd Edition), Gordon L. Robertson, 2006, ISBN 0849337755
  • Food Packaging Science and Technology, Dong Sun Lee, Kit Yam, Luciano Piergiovanni, 2008, ISBN 978-0-8247-2779-6

Course Outline

  • Historical aspects of food packaging
  • Modern food packaging industry
  • Discussion – Industry article on RTD Milk
    • Shelf life – Light and oxygen
    • HDPE vs PET
    • Clear/Opaque, Shrink label
    • Bottle sealing (conduction versus induction sealing)
    • Environmental issues
  • Major Food Packaging Polymers
    • Chemical structure, chemical properties
    • Names (spelling counts)
    • In-class lab demos (nylon 6,6 and PVOH vs LDPE)
    • Polymers packaging production (extrusion, thermoforming, blow molding, injection molding, Heat sealing)
  • Food Chemistry for Packaging Engineers
    • Temperature (sphere of influence)
    • Light, gases, vapors (sphere of control)
    • Major food constituent sensitivities (Lipids, Proteins, Carbs, Vitamins, Minerals)
    • Quality factors (color, aroma, texture, etc.) and practical end of shelf life determination.
    • Water activity – Moisture Sorption Isotherm Lab Demo
  • Gas/vapor permeation (Mass Transfer)
    • Migration – Prediction, TOR
    • Fick and Henry (solubility) – OTR, WVTR (Arrhenius temperature sensitivity)
    • Oxygen limited shelf life estimation
    • Water limited shelf life determination
    • Lab demo – Measuring OTR and WVTR of packaging films
  • Modified Atmosphere Packaging
    • Low, high and balanced oxygen applications.
    • Produce aerobic vs anaerobic respiration
    • Lab Demo – Respiration measurement
    • CO2/Carbonic acid equilibrium as pH mediated microbial control
  • Thermal processing
    • Arrhenius (chemical), Thermal Death Time (bio), Shelf life kinetics (Packaging)
    • Retort vs aseptic processing (HTST and UHT)
  • Metal Packaging
    • 2-piece (DRD, DWI) and 3-piece can fabrication
    • Double seam construction and inspection (industry training video)
    • Corrosion (internal and external)
      • Galvanic series/half cells (limits of predictability)
      • Nernst (ionic concentration)
      • Passivation
    • Coatings (metallic and organic)
    • Modes of failure
  • Paper
    • Definition, production and recycling
    • As component of multi-layer
    • Moisture protection with wax or LDPE (dry end)
    • Moisture protection with additives (wet end)
    • Calendaring and super calendaring – grease “proof” papers
  • Glass
    • Production and recycling (cullet)
    • Colors (light)
  • Food Contact Regulations, Migration, Dietary Concentration
    • Testing
    • Regulations
    • Modeling


A C- will not be a qualifying grade for critical tracking courses.  In order to graduate, students must have an overall GPA and an upper-division GPA of 2.0 or better (C or better).  Note: a C- average is equivalent to a GPA of 1.67, and therefore, it does not satisfy this graduation requirement.  For more information on grades and grading policies, please visit:

Attendance is Mandatory

There will be 3 regular exams each worth 100 points. All homework and quiz scores will be combined into one score on a 100 point scale that counts as one exam grade. The final exam will be comprehensive and optional (“if you like your grade after the 3rd exam, you can keep your grade). The final exam carries the weight of two regular exams. Without the final, total possible points is 300. With the final, total possible points is 500. The final exam DOES NOT replace your lowest grade.

Grading Scale
A 90-100%
B+ 87-89
B 83-86
B- 80-82
C+ 77-79
C 73-76
C- 70-72
D+ 67-69
D 63-66
D- 60-62
E <60
Grading method Points
Exams (3 @ 100 each) 300
Fnal Exam (optional) 200

Academic Honesty

As a student at the University of Florida, you have committed yourself to uphold the Honor Code, which includes the following pledge: “We, the members of the University of Florida community, pledge to hold ourselves and our peers to the highest standards of honesty and integrity.”  You are expected to exhibit behavior consistent with this commitment to the UF academic community, and on all work submitted for credit at the University of Florida, the following pledge is either required or implied: "On my honor, I have neither given nor received unauthorized aid in doing this assignment." 
It is assumed that you will complete all work independently in each course unless the instructor provides explicit permission for you to collaborate on course tasks (e.g. assignments, papers, quizzes, exams). Furthermore, as part of your obligation to uphold the Honor Code, you should report any condition that facilitates academic misconduct to appropriate personnel. It is your individual responsibility to know and comply with all university policies and procedures regarding academic integrity and the Student Honor Code.  Violations of the Honor Code at the University of Florida will not be tolerated. Violations will be reported to the Dean of Students Office for consideration of disciplinary action. For more information regarding the Student Honor Code, please see:  

Accommodation for Students with Disabilities

The Disability Resource Center coordinates the needed accommodations of students with disabilities. This includes registering disabilities, recommending academic accommodations within the classroom, accessing special adaptive computer equipment, providing interpretation services and mediating faculty-student disability related issues.

0001 Reid Hall, 352-392-8565,  

Software Use

All faculty, staff and student of the University are required and expected to obey the laws and legal agreements governing software use. Failure to do so can lead to monetary damages and/or criminal penalties for the individual violator. Because such violations are also against University policies and rules, disciplinary action will be taken as appropriate. We, the members of the University of Florida community, pledge to uphold ourselves and our peers to the highest standards of honesty and integrity.

Campus Helping Resources

Students experiencing crises or personal problems that interfere with their general well-being are encouraged to utilize the university’s counseling resources. The Counseling & Wellness Center provides confidential counseling services at no cost for currently enrolled students. Resources are available on campus for students having personal problems or lacking clear career or academic goals, which interfere with their academic performance.

  • University Counseling & Wellness Center, 3190 Radio Road, 352-392-1575,

    Counseling Services
    Groups and Workshops
    Outreach and Consultation
    Self-Help Library
    Training Programs
    Community Provider Database

  • Career Resource Center, First Floor JWRU, 392-1601,