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Interview with Harm van Nispen from Van Gorp Greenfood

Since when is Van Gorp using the Laser en Respiration System from PerfoTec?
We have been using the laser for about 8 years now.

For which products and which packaging are you using the PerfoTec laser?
The laser is installed on a VVVS machine, on which we produce pillow bags. We use the laser for packaging with mixed lettuce combinations.

There are lettuce mixes that contain ingredients, which do not go well together in 1 packaging. For example a mix that contains iceberg lettuce, baby leaf and sliced carrots. By choosing a right combination of N2 and the right number of laser perforations, you can prevent the iceberg lettuce from changing colour, and the baby leafs from getting soft and weak.

What is the added value of the PerfoTec system for you and your customers?
The laser gives us a lot of flexibility. We are not depended on the permeability of the film as we can determine the respiration of the packaging ourselves with the existing film. Therefore we do not need to store different types of films in our warehouse and only need to store 1 type. By changing the gas mixture and /or laser perforations we can extend the shelf life of different lettuce combinations.

Did you increase the freshness by a number of days with the PerfoTec system? And if so how many days?
This also depends a lot on the quality and the origin of the ingredients. Lettuce combinations with baby leaf will be kept fresh for longer by a couple of days. Which means that without the laser perforations the other ingredients can maintain their freshness up to 7 days, but not the baby leafs. In which case the whole product is disapproved. Arugula lettuce will also not stay fresh for long without laser perforations as this product needs a lot of oxygen.

How is it to work with the Laser and Fast Respiration Meter?
If you only have the laser you can determine the right settings with a couple of tests. Every test takes about a week. 1 test is no test, so several tests need to be done to develop a good picture of the respiration rate of a particular product. With a Fast Respiration Meter you already know within 6 hours what the respiration rate of the product is. Which means you could do 3 measurements in 1 day to get a good average. With the results of the Respiration Meter you can go to a special website from PerfoTec, where the right settings for the laser will be calculated.

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