Minimizing mineral oil Migration

Measurement and prediction of the migration of mineral oil components (MOH) from pack-aging into foods as a contribution to minimization of contamination

Workgroup: Compliance of Packaging Material

Scientific Partners and Guidance:

  • Fraunhofer-Institut für Verfahrenstechnik und Verpackung IVV, Dr. Roland Franz / Ludwig Gruber
  • Technische Universität München, Lehrstuhl für Systemverfahrenstechnik; Prof. Dr.-Ing. Heiko Briesen

IGF: 19016 N
Financing: BMWi
Duration: 2015-2018

Mineral oil components like MOSH (mineral oil saturated hydrocarbons) and MOAH (mineral oil aromatic hydrocarbons) have their origin mainly in newspaper inks and find their way into paper based packaging materials via the paper recycling process. The migration of mineral oil components, especially the MOAH fraction, into foods is a serious problem as they are suspected to cause cancer. Current knowledge on migration processes is limited and thus, industry demands for a scientific basement for conformity issues and further product development, which former studies may not provide.

The research goal is to provide guidelines, which enable enterprises to assess current packaging solutions and novel migration prevention strategies or barrier-concepts regarding their MOSH and MOAH migration properties. The project extends the knowledge about migration processes in and out of packaging materials and provides new insights into the transfer processes in foods by means of instrumental analysis and modelling. Especially small and medium-sized enterprises (SME) with their limited resources for pre-competitive research are supported by the goals of the project. The models provided by the project will be easily transferable to similar food systems. The examined food examples were therefore selected based on their phase composition (solid, liquid, gaseous).


The IGF project presented here is funded by the AiF as part of the program for the promotion of industrial community research (IGF) by the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy based on a decision of the German Bundestag.