Supermarket Display Case Lighting for Packaged Foods
Ultraviolet light and visible spectrum radiation can damage packaged and processed foods, causing fading and accelerating the decomposition process. The most damaging portions of the visible spectrum are the yellow and green wavelengths, which most fluorescents tend to emit in higher proportions than the other colors. This imbalance can distort the natural colors of food, making processed food look unappealing while also exposing it to the risk of spoilage.
Promolux lamps and LEDs emit a more balanced range of wavelengths, including more of the red and blue wavelengths and more moderate levels of the yellow and green wavelengths, and minimal levels of ultraviolet radiation. As a result, packaged and processed foods have a much longer shelf life when they are displayed under Promolux true color definition lamps and LEDs.
Processed Food in Grocery Store Merchandisers
Light is a factor in initiating the chemical processes that change the color and flavor of food and cause nutrients to degrade. Carotenoids, the lipid soluble pigments that give fruits and vegetables red and yellow colors, oxidize and degrade in stored and processed foods at rates determined by the length of exposure to light and heat. Lipid oxidation, a process which causes fats to degrade and turn rancid, is initiated and accelerated by light and temperature, and can cause the quality of stored and processed foods to deteriorate.
Promolux fluorescent lamps and LEDs emit low levels of the damaging radiation that can cause food to spoil and become discolored. Under Promolux lamps, processed foods have a longer shelf life.
Vegetable Oils in Supermarket Display Cases
When exposed to lighting, fats such as vegetable oils can oxidize, which is the chemical process that causes fats to turn rancid. This process is accelerated by heat and results in off-flavors.
Olive oil is very sensitive to the harmful effects of light. Dark olive oils, such as cold pressed virgin olive oils, contain high levels of chlorophyll. As a photo-absorber, chlorophyll absorbs and retains light, which accelerates lipid oxidation. Olive oil is often sold in clear bottles to display the color of the oil, but this makes the oil more vulnerable to lipid oxidation. Olive oil packaged in dark bottles or in cans, protected from the light, stays fresh much longer.
The shelf life of vegetable oils is maximized when displayed with Promolux display case lighting, because Promolux low UV fluorescents, as well as our LED product line, emit minimal levels of the damaging radiation that is prominent in most supermarket fluorescent lightbulbs.
Clear Glass Packaging for Processed Foods
Clear glass jars and bottles are often used to package processed foods and oils, boosting impulse sales by allowing consumers to see the product. However, the clear glass allows harmful visible spectrum and ultraviolet radiation to enter the container, which can cause the food to decompose and become pale or discolored. Fatty acids become oxidized and cause foods to turn rancid. Dairy products in jars such as salad dressings lose nutrients and develop off-flavors with prolonged exposure to light. Under damaging lighting, fruit juices can also develop off-flavors.
The damage caused by grocery store lighting is minimized by displaying food and beverages in glass containers under Promolux low UV and balanced spectrum lighting.