Wanted: Barrier film that works

When Food Engineering conducted its first packaging trends survey in 1986, high barrier plastic containers that could withstand high temperatures and were effective and affordable was cited as the number one need for respondents' companies. A third of respondents were skeptical that the solutions being offered would actually work when the packages were filled with food.

Readers also provided an ambitious wish list, including a "packaging system made from aluminum that could be 'safely' "microwaved" and "a barrier bag which is impermeable to oxygen but will allow carbon dioxide and hydrogen gas out." One simply wanted "a replacement for our #10 can that is sturdy, lightweight, inexpensive, retortable and made of safe materials." One out of three isn't bad.