So do I. Is it ethene itself? Or some oligomer (hexene, octene)? Is the
smell present in the new material, or is it a product of slow breakdown?
Oliver 'Ojo' Bedford schrieb in im Newsbeitrag:
Not a simple question! I have done some work involving off-tastes
and odors in food and beverages packaged in plastic, and the
chemistry is pretty complicated.
In my experience, the compounds most associated with "plastic"
tastes or odor are aldehydes, which are oxidation products of
polyethylene. Hexanal is a particularly "bad actor."
Other oxidation products of polyethylene, such as low molecular
weight carboxylic acids, can also affect taste and odor.
There is also an odor usually attributed to slip agents such as
oleamide or erucamide, but I suspect that this is actually due to
oxidation products and impurities in the slip, rather than the slip
Another issue is that polyethylene packaging can selectively
adsorb certain flavor and odor compounds from a food or beverage
product, which may cause other, less desirable tastes or smells
naturally present in the product to become more noticible.
All of this is not to say that you shouldn't use polyethylene
packaging -- food and beverage products will interact with any
container they are placed in, whether it is plastic, metal, or
glass. Understanding the nature of the interaction is the key
to achieving good results.
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