The preservation of chia seed from moisture, water damage, and insect infestation (grain weevils and moths) can be achieved using flexible bulk packaging.
Due to chia seeds’ natural antioxidant compounds, the problem of oxidation is not a chief concern. It is mainly during transport that preservation challenges appear, particularly in containers.
Though the container liner does have the advantage of a polypropylene film, performing some vacuum and modified atmosphere (MAP) functions, the technology behind it has no way to measure or control the inner package atmosphere. Besides this, the risk of leakage in a lined container is higher compared to using VacQPack liners, which are individual to each pallet.
Using VacQPack liners or the exterior liner, chia seed cargo conditioned in single units is better protected from cross contamination, and easier to maneuver and store at destination. In fact, the package is the same, from the post-harvest stage to the final warehouse, where it is processed into smaller retailer packaging.
During storage, temperature plays an important role in preservation, in preventing or in the case of detection of insect infestation.
Chia seeds have an inherent ability to absorb more than 12 times their weight in water. This ability to hold water can prolong hydration and help retention of electrolytes in body fluids. Taking this into account, chia bulk packages should possess a moisture content of 8% or even lower.
VacQPack chemical-free fumigation can assure that the stabilization of 8% moisture is accomplished, due to its gas-tight barrier of Ethylene vinyl alcohol (EVOH), which delivers very low oxygen and water vapor transmission rates (OTR, WVTR).
The VacQPack system can perform record keeping of the atmosphere of each package, which is also prepared to be opened for monitoring, sampling, or even cargo removal and consequent reseal.
This technical approach will meet phytosanitary standards, traceability demands, and ultimately ensure the purity of the cargo.