Here’s a fun fact; did you know that humans have been drinking milk from animals for over 10,000 years. It’s also interesting to note that humans haven’t fully evolved enough to the point where our digestive systems are completely tolerant of milk. That’s right; we’re all slightly lactose intolerant.
It’s important that we mention milk intolerance because, without the process of pasteurisation, milk would not be as safe to drink as it is today. We owe much to Louis Pasteur for his scientific method of heating and cooling milk in order to kill microorganisms. Modern Ultra-High Temperature pasteurisation (UHT) is a more contemporary version of pasteurisation that allows milk to be heated to incredibly high temperatures for very short space of time, before being returned back to normal temperature.
This process makes milk, clinically speaking, very clean. However, with older methods of packaging (think traditional milk cartonboard and sachets), the milk could still become contaminated fairly quickly, resulting in the souring of the milk in the same period of time as ‘ol-fashioned’, traditionally pasteurised milk.
Modern packaging, however, has changed everything. The modern PET plastic bottle performs wonderfully as a barrier against water and moisture, making it the perfect material to store drinks for human consumption. It also just so happens to be a very clean material that does not contaminate the liquids it holds. If milk were to be transferred into a modern PET bottle without access to open-air, and then sealed air-tight within the bottle after having been pasteurised via UHT methods, the milk could essentially be bottled and stored (un-refrigerated) for many months. This would be an impossible job for cartonboard. Furthermore, dry decontamination of PET bottles before adding the milk product further prevents milk contamination.
This advancement in milk packaging has been achieved by many milk brands, and now we can open a bottle of milk, not in four or five weeks from purchase, but rather four or five months. Advancements in the packaging manufacturing industry has allowed us to take the step from milk packaging within cartonboard to that of PET, just one of the many small ways that packaging contributes to our quality of life.
For all your packaging materials and needs, contact Design Packaging & Tapes, your preferred packaging supplier in Gauteng.