Modified Atmosphere Packaging vs. Vacuum Packaging

If you walk through any grocery store’s meat aisle, you will see meat and poultry neatly displayed in a variety of packages. The best two types of packaging currently being used for meat packaging are Modified Atmosphere Packaging and vacuum packaging. While Modified Atmosphere Packaging and vacuum packaging offer similar preservation benefits, Modified Atmosphere Packaging allows various aesthetic and presentation benefits that make modified atmosphere packaged products much more enticing to potential consumers.

MAP Delivers Better Presentation & Aesthetics

One advantage of using MAP as opposed to vacuum packaging is in presentation of the product. In vacuum packaging, as the pressure within the packaging is reduced the packaging material collapses and forms itself tightly around the product. For some products, such as fresh meat, this can distort the appearance of the product. Other products, such as shredded cheese, are not suitable for vacuum packaging because the pressure of the packaging material on the product would cause the product to deform and to lose important characteristics.

QC through Monitoring

Another aspect in which the two processes differ is in the ease of quality control of the packaging process. In MAP packaging, air is flushed from the package and replaced with the gas mixture, making it possible to constantly monitor the gas content of the package during the packaging process. Once the package is sealed, any leakage of the modified atmosphere can be detected, enabling the integrity of the seal to be assured.

For vacuum packaging, because there is no gas present in the package, leak testing is typically done through manual inspection, making quality control slower, less straightforward, and therefore harder to implement at scale.

We would love to talk to you about how we can help you implement a scalable Quality Control (QC) process to your Modified Atmosphere Packaging process. We would love to help.

Feel free to contact us at to learn more about how we can help and what we offer.