Good Morning from Canada!
I work for a company that manufactures a pastrami seasoning "sheet" for use in flavoring meat. Basically we apply the pastrami seasoning to a plastic carrier using a food grade bonding agent. The end product allows for easy application of the pastrami to the meat product during the cooking process.
The sheets are packaged like paper @ 20 to a bag and then vacuum sealed. 15 bags are packed to a box and this product is shipped by sea by the pallet load to the UK.
During the summer months of transport the product is prone to bloating. We know that the combination of moisture in the bonding agent, the pepper in the pastrami and the heat of the shipping container (50 degrees Celsius) is causing this to happen. The product maintains its shelf stability (there are no micro or yeast/mold issues).
While we take the time to study the chemistry of the product more closely, we would like to change the way we package the product for now to accommodate for the issue. One of the ideas on the table is to bulk bag the product, fold the bag shut and tape in such a way as to let any gases formed escape.
Does anyone have any experience with "loose" packaging? Perhaps other ideas to circumvent the issue?
I'm leaning most strongly to refrigeration for summer transport, but we're be encouraged to be as cost effective as possible.