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What is the real proof for food grade food containers?

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#1 fodaphile


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Posted 16 October 2014 - 12:55 AM

Hi all,

I do not very understand the idea of food grade. What is the real proof for food grade food containers?

Sometimes supplier showed me lab test on certain chemicals (say lead) but I am not sure it is enough.

Is there a standard food grade test for food contact surface?
Or, migration test, container ingredients all needed?


#2 Simon


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Posted 16 October 2014 - 05:48 AM

The test for food grade containers or containers that are coming into direct contact with food is indeed end product migration testing.


The migration testing should be conducted by a competent and accredited ISO 17025 lab and should cover the range of uses of the packaging material e.g.


- the samples should be printed if the packaging is printed

- if muliple raw materials are used by the packaging supplier then they all would all need to be tested separately

- should consider the migration laws where the packaging products will be sold and the food consumed

- should cover the range of product and processing conditions of the suppliers food producer customers e.g. hot fill temperature, high acid, high fat etc.


After all that is done then the packaging supplier can specify packaging materials to customers from a position of knowledge based on their distinct use.  They need to aks customers about their product and processing etc. during new product discussions.


Then after that it is up to the customer to finally prove it through their process.

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#3 campbell


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Posted 16 October 2014 - 12:00 PM

As Simon indicates there are legal requirements for chemicals in relation to food contact materials. FDA 21 CFR 170.6 and EU 1935/2005.

 It is generally only the direct food contact surface which needs to be considered.  There are instanvces where non-food contact should also be consoisidered but these are less l;ikely.  Whils most people consider chemicals in relation to food grade the microbiological issues must not be ignored particularly with regard to high care/high risk products.

#4 Charles.C


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Posted 16 October 2014 - 02:12 PM

Dear fodaphile,


As indicated in previous posts, in many locations the generic answer to yr question is simply  "The Law". :smile:


i.e. Legally defined characteristics exist whch the "container" must comply with to be able to claim - "Food Grade".


Rgds / Charles.C

Kind Regards,



#5 CMHeywood


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Posted 22 October 2014 - 06:34 PM

Depends on the laws and regulations in your market areas:  FDA, Health Canada, Europe, etc.   Vendors often have one document that addresses several issues.  Lead is a heavy metal that is addressed by CONEG (Toxics in Packaging) type state laws, as well as California Prop 65.  Lead is also restricted in packaging for toys or child products (CPSIA, European regulations).  The information that your vendor provides may have info besides food-contact.

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