The quality and shelf life of a product — everything that leads to a satisfied customer — will go down the tubes if there is a leak in the material or seal. For this reason, baking and snack companies should incorporate equipment and processes to test closures and film resistance.

Matrix Packaging Machinery can help customers test vertical packaging by sending empty bags through sealing machines and then immersing them in a container of water.

“If there are bubbles, the seal is not leak-proof,” said Christine Duncan, marketing manager, flexibles, Matrix Packaging Machinery. “Steps can be made to correct this, such as increasing the temperature for sealing or considering different film.”

Available as an option on all its rotary jaw Robag systems, the Product-In-Seal-Detection (PISD) system from TNA Solutions provides an air leakage test for the seal.

“Instead of checking the bag after it has been made, which can cause leaks or damaged product, the PISD system monitors the jaw sealing the bag to determine whether there was an inclusion in the jaw that may subsequently cause a leak and automatically rejects that bag,” said Shayne De la Force, chief marketing officer, TNA Solutions.

To enhance quality and shelf life, some products require nitrogen flushing, an enhancement that is lost if air gets through the bag, said Jeffrey Almond, snack food industry manager, packaging, Heat and Control.

“A deflated bag on the store shelf will probably not be purchased and will most likely have damaged product inside,” he noted. “Leakage testing equipment also determines the elevation at which a bag can remain intact during transportation.”