Patent application title: ETHYL ALCOHOL EMITTING PACKAGE FOR BAKED GOODS
George E. Mckedy (Williamsville, NY, US)
George E. Mckedy (Williamsville, NY, US)
Thomas H. Powers (Mayville, NY, US)
Thomas H. Powers (Mayville, NY, US)
MULTISORB TECHNOLOGIES, INC.
IPC8 Class: AB65D8128FI
Class name: Food or edible material: processes, compositions, and products packaged or wrapped product package containing separate noncoated or laminated interior inedible solid material
Publication date: 2014-09-18
Patent application number: 20140272021
The invention relates to a food package comprising a container having
moisture barrier properties and containing a product subject to mold
growth and further containing stabilized ethyl alcohol emitting composite
1. A food package comprising a container having moisture barrier
properties and containing a product subject to mold growth and further
containing stabilized ethyl alcohol emitting composite material.
2. The package of claim 1 wherein the ethyl alcohol is solidified.
3. The package of claim 1 wherein ethyl alcohol emitter is capable of emitting ethyl alcohol to prevent mold growth on baked goods for a period of 21 days.
4. The package of claim 3 wherein the ethyl alcohol is stabilized utilizing hydroxylpropyl cellulose.
5. The package of claim 1 wherein the product comprises bread.
6. The package of claim 1 wherein the alcohol emitting composite material is in a sachet.
7. The package of claim 1 wherein the alcohol admitting stabilized composite material is printed on the inside of the package.
8. The package of claim 1 wherein the composite material is printed onto a label on the inside of the package.
9. The package of claim 1 wherein the stabilized ethyl alcohol is in a carrier.
10. The package of claim 3 wherein the stabilized alkyl (ethyl) alcohol is thickened with (hydroxypropyl) oxypropyl cellulose.
11. The package of claim 3 wherein the ethyl alcohol emitting composite material comprises (hydroxypropyl) oxypropyl cellulose containing absorbed ethyl alcohol.
12. The package of claim 1 further comprising flavorants.
13. The package of claim 1 further comprising fragrances.
14. The package of claim 1 wherein the product comprises a food product.
15. A method of packaging comprising providing an atmosphere barrier package, placing a stabilized ethyl alcohol emitter in the package, placing a product subject to mold growth in the package, and sealing the package.
16. The method of claim 15 wherein the ethyl alcohol is solidified.
17. The method of claim 15 wherein the ethyl alcohol is thickened.
18. The method of claim 17 wherein the ethyl alcohol is stabilized utilizing hydroxypropyl cellulose.
19. The method of claim 15 wherein the product comprises bread.
20. The method of claim 15 wherein the carrier for alcohol emitting material is in a sachet.
21. The method of claim 15 wherein the alcohol carrier for the admitting composite material is printed on the inside of the package.
22. The method of claim 15 wherein the carrier for the alcohol emitter material is a label on the inside of the package.
23. The method of claim 18 wherein the stabilized alkyl alcohol is stabilized with (hydroxypropy) oxypropyl cellulose.
24. The method of claim 18 wherein the ethyl alcohol admitting composite material comprises silica gel containing absorbed ethyl alcohol.
25. The method of claim 20 further comprising flavorants in the sachet.
26. The method of claim 20 further comprising fragrances in the sachet.
27. The method of claim 15 wherein the product comprises a food product.
FIELD OF THE INVENTION
 The invention relates to the increase in shelf life of food products by improving the storage life. The invention particularly relates to the decreasing of mold growth.
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION
 The invention relates to the improving of the shelf life of products that are subject to mold growth during their packaging.
 It is known in the preparation of bread and other grain products to spray ethyl alcohol into a bag of the product or onto the product to prolong shelf life.
 It is known to package foods and pharmaceuticals in packages that prolong the life of the materials by packaging these materials with oxygen absorbers or humidity control agents. It is also known to absorb carbon dioxide from packages. It is known to flush food packages with nitrogen to reduce their oxygen content and thereby prolong shelf life during storage.
 U.S. Pat. No. 6,139,935--Colin discloses an oxygen absorbing label that may be affixed to the inner surface of a package. U.S. Pat. No. 6,558,571--Powers discloses use of in oxygen absorbing material in extending food shelf life. U.S. Pat. No. 7,549,272--DeFedericis discloses a canister for use, with desiccants or oxygen absorbents, in packaging. The use of sachet was in packaging of water and oxygen absorbing materials for use in foods and medicinal products is also known.
 Latou et al. in The Journal of Cereal Science 52 (2010), pages 457-465 discloses treatment of bread with an ethanol emitter alone or combined with an oxygen absorber.
 Salminen et al. in Packaging Technology and Science Vol. 9, pages 29-42 (1996). The use of ethanol and oxygen absorption to prolong the shelf life of rye bread.
 U.S. Pat. No. 7,387,205--Wilson discloses a packaging system for perishable items that may include the use of ethanol.
 There is a need in the art for a method of preserving foods, such as baked goods, that are particularly susceptible to the growth of mold. There's a need for a method of preserving these foods in a safe and low-cost way that does not require new packaging techniques.
Problem to be Solved by the Invention
 There is a need for an improvement in mold growth control on packaged products.
BRIEF SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION
 The invention provides a food package food comprising a container having moisture barrier properties and containing a product subject to mold growth and further containing stabilized ethyl alcohol emitting composite material.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS
 FIG. 1 is cross-sectional schematic view of a label or patch with ethyl alcohol emitter of the invention.
 FIG. 2 is a cross-sectional schematic of a sachet containing the ethyl alcohol emitter of the invention.
 FIG. 3 is a schematic view of an invention package utilizing the ethyl alcohol emitter in a label.
 FIG. 4 is a schematic cross-sectional view of the use of an ethyl alcohol emitter sachet in package.
DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION
 The invention has numerous advantages over prior practices for minimizing mold growth on food, particularly baked goods. The invention provides a known method of packaging using carriers such as labels, sachets and canisters to contain a material that will minimize mold growth and prolong shelf life. The invention results in significant cost savings as and bread and produce will have a longer shelf life and therefore are less likely to be wasted by becoming outdated. These and other advantages will be apparent from the detailed description below.
 The invention may be utilized to increase shelf life of any material that is subject to mold growth during storage. While the invention finds its primary use in food products it may also be utilized in storage of other materials that may be subject to mold such as pharmaceutical products. With respect to food products the invention typically could be utilized with hard sausage, potatoes, apples, nuts, wheat, oats, cheese, and corn. It finds its preferred use in baked products such as bread, rolls, cakes, and cookies.
 The composition that may be utilized in the invention generally is a composition that has ethyl alcohol that has been stabilized and then the alcohol is given off as a vapor during storage of the food product. The alcohol may be combined with a carrier such as silica gel or activated carbon. The ethyl alcohol is thickened by having an additive mixed with it to raise the viscosity to create a solid or highly viscous material. The ethyl alcohol also may be combined with a thickening agent such as cellulose. The cellulose may be wood fibers or a material such as (hydroxypropyl cellulose), oxypropl cellulose or cellulose ether. These materials will thicken the alcohol such that it may be readily held in a carrier such as a label or sachet. Further, the thickened alcohol may be applied as print onto the inner surface of the container.
 The package that utilizes the ethylene alcohol emitting material to prevent mold growth may be any suitable package that is generally impervious to the atmosphere. Such materials include the conventional polyester and polyethylene bags that are utilized for baked goods and other materials. Further boxes containing a barrier sheet of plastic may be utilized. Further, the packages may be wrapped with an atmosphere impervious wrapping. In all instances the ethylene alcohol emitter is within the package at the time the product subject to mold growth, is packaged.
 The carrier which holds the ethyl alcohol also may be provided with other materials that would act as fragrances, flavorants, or as antimicrobial materials. Typical of flavorants would be flavor such as lemon, lime, chocolate, strawberry, cherry, bacon, smoke, buttery and margarita. The fragrance could be a fresh baked fragrance for bread and other baked goods or a fruit fragrance. The flavorants or fragrances are added that correspond to the product being packaged, such as smoke for sausage, jerkys and some cheese, and fruit flavor for baked goods that have a fruit such as raisins or strawberries therein.
 In FIG. 1 is a schematic illustration of an absorber patch or label for ethyl alcohol emitting composite material. The patch 10 would be adhered to the inside of a covering forming a food package. The patch 10 is comprised of a removable base 12 of a strippable material that will not adhere significantly to adhesive layer 14. The layer 16 is a paper or polymer sheet support for the patch. Layer 18 provides an adhesive layer for heat sealing the cover layer 28 around its edges 22. Cover layer 28 is permeable to gases but not liquids and attached to layer 18 at its edges 22. This type of label or patch is generally disclosed in U.S. Pat. No. 6,139,935--Cullen where the formation of oxygen absorbing labels is disclosed. The formation of label or patch of the instant invention is similar except that the material is suitable for emitting ethyl alcohol not for absorbing oxygen. The ethyl alcohol emitter for 24 is shown as globuals 24 within a fibrous material 26 such as filter paper. The alcohol emitting composite material may be either a solid particle or may be a thickened and stabilized alcohol absorbed on a carrier such as paper. The solid particles 24 are thickened globuals of ethyl alcohol. The globuals may be thickened with a material such as guar gum or a carboxymethyl-cellulose. It is noted that although the globuals are shown as embedded in a fibrous material it is possible that the ethyl alcohol could be a solidified particle. The label could also contain a viscous composite of ethyl alcohol and a thickener, such as cellulose without the fibrous material.
 FIG. 4 is a schematic cross-section of a package 50 for cake, bread or other mold-growing food with stabilized ethyl alcohol emitted by sachet 30. With the exception of the use of the sachet instead of the patch or label FIG. 4 is similar to FIG. 3.
 While the permeable container of the invention that holds the stabilized ethylene alcohol emitting composite has been illustrated as either a sachet 30 or a label or patch 10 the invention is not limited to these particular containers for stabilized ethyl alcohol emitting material. The container also could be a permeable tube or a container that has one permeable side. It further could be formed of a polymer strip that had a stabilized ethyl alcohol emitting material embedded in the strip.
 The covering used in the package may be any polymer material that provides good odor and oxygen barrier properties. Typical of such materials are polycarbonate, polyvinyl alcohols, lactic acid polymers, polyesters, and polypropylene. A preferred material is polyethylene, particularly low density polyethylene because it is low cost and a good barrier layer for oxygen and odors.
 The covering for the package may be wrapped onto the package and sealed, it may be a bag that is sealed, or may be a tube that is sealed at both ends. The formation of sealed substantially air tight food packages is well known.
 The water impermeable vapor permeable covering for at least a portion of the sachet, container or label or other ethyl alcohol emitting carrier of the invention may be any material that will pass the ethyl alcohol and inhibits passage of water or other liquids. Typical of such materials are microporous spunbonded materials and microporous materials derived from stretched porous materials. A preferred material is a spunbonded material that is microporous, such as Tyvek and stretched microporous material manufactured by Gore-Tex.
 Illustrated schematically in cross-section FIG. 2 is a sachet 30 that could be used to package stabilized ethyl alcohol emitting material. The sachet 30 has a cover 32 which is water impermeable and gas permeable. The sachet is sealed at 34 and 36, and formed from either a tubular sheet member or flat sheet that has been folded over and sealed to form a tube. The tube is filled with the stabilized ethyl alcohol emitting material prior to both of the ends being sealed. The composite material is shown as globuals 38 which are thickened ethyl alcohol. The ethyl alcohol also could be thickened with a material such as cellulose fiber.
 FIG. 3 is a package 40 for preparing a food material such as bread or cake 46 for display or shipping prior to sale. The package comprises a covering 42 that is the outer covering of the package. The covering comprises a bag 42 that is sealed shut at 48. The package 40 has a patch or label 10 fastened to the inner surface of the covering bag 42. The cake 46 is carried in tray 44. After the cake 46, tray 44, and patch 10 have been placed into the covering it is sealed with seal 48. While illustrated as having the large space for gas the bag may be subjected to vacuum or a modified atmosphere in the bag to lower oxygen content to slow mold growth and result in a closely wrapped cake or other grain product. Conventional packing cannot completely eliminate oxygen and some mold growth is caused by enzymes. The stabilized ethyl alcohol emitter 10 will lengthen the time when the cake is suitable for consumer use as it will delay any mold formation.
 The stabilized ethyl alcohol may be stabilized and/or thickened with any suitable stabilizing material. Typical of such materials are quar gum, (hydroxycellulose), oxycellulose, carboxy methyl cellulose and hydroxypropyl cellulose and poly vinyl pyrrolidone. A preferred material is cellulose in the form of fine fibers or a powder as it effectively thickens and is safe with foods. A stabilized ethyl alcohol will be thickened such that it will generally hold its shape without significant running when placed on a flat surface. The material may be mixed with the stabilizer material in any amount to achieve the desired properties for a particular use. For instance if the material is to be printed directly on the inside of a package or onto a strip of base material to be placed in the package the must viscosity must be such as to allow printing. If the material is to be placed in a sachet or patch the viscosity may be in a wider range as the packages are generally impervious to liquids. Even with these sorts of packages, the viscosity should be high, because escape of the material from the package in the event the sachet or patch package is punctured is not desirable.
 The following examples are intended to be exemplary and not exhaustive of embodiments of the invention. Parts and percentages are by weight unless otherwise indicated.
 Mixes used in the Examples:
 Mix 1
 Mix 1 contains by weight 70% silica gel and 36% 200 proof ethanol. It is formed by mixing 24.3 grams of 13× molecular sieve and 23 grams, 200 proof ethanol mix and allowing the mixture to sit overnight prior to use
 Mix 2
 Mix 2 contains 25% ethyl alcohol and 75% activated carbon (Calgon). It is formed by mixing 9.4 grams of the ethyl alcohol and 28.8 grams of activated charcoal (Calgon) and allowing the mixture stand overnight.
 A sample from Mix 1 has 6.12 grams ethyl alcohol in 17.0 grams sample. The sample was placed in a desiccator with an excess of molecular sieve absorbent. Table 1 below shows the percentage of alcohol given off between 0 and 15 days.
TABLE-US-00001 TABLE 1 Days Sample Wt. Gm. % Alcohol Removed 0 17.0 0% 1 12.6 71.9% 2 12.2 78.4% 5 11.91 83.2% 6 11.89 83.8% 8 11.77 85.5% 11 11.73 86.1% 15 11.6 88.2%
 A sample from Mix 2 weighing 20.1 grams comprising about ethyl alcohol (30% by weight) and activated carbon (70% by weight) is tested. The sample comprises 5.3 grams of ethyl alcohol. The sample was placed in a dessicator with an excess of molecular sieve absorbent. The following Table 2 measures the alcohol given off over between 0 and 15 days.
TABLE-US-00002 TABLE 2 Days Sample Wt. Gm. % Alcohol Removed 0 20.1 0% 1 17.9 10.9% 2 17.5 51.7% 5 16.92 63.2% 6 16.7 67.6% 8 16.42 73.2% 11 16.2 77.5% 15 15.77 86.2%
 The Examples 1 and 2 above show that molecular sieve and activated carbon give up the alcohol during the storage time. Although molecular sieve gives up about 72% in one day, another 16% is given off over the time of the 15 day test. Carbon gives up the alcohol at a slower rate and would be preferred for storage of most baked goods. The activated carbon gives up about 52% in two days and another about 34% over the next 13 days. The Examples show the suitability of these materials for storage of baked goods.
Patent applications by George E. Mckedy, Williamsville, NY US
Patent applications by Thomas H. Powers, Mayville, NY US
Patent applications by MULTISORB TECHNOLOGIES, INC.
Patent applications in class Package containing separate noncoated or laminated interior inedible solid material
Patent applications in all subclasses Package containing separate noncoated or laminated interior inedible solid material