2008 年 56 巻 4 号 p. 209-218
Milk containers have passed through various changes, since milk was released in Japan in the early Meiji era. Three kinds of containers are available such as glass, paperboard and plastic types, although the plastic container is not popular commercially. Various technologies have been invented for these containers to improve functions in response to their characteristics. Milk cartons have been improved on demand of universal design, such as discrimination with notch and easy peeling at the top of the carton. Additionally devices to promote recycling of paperboard are introduced for the protection of environment. In some cases the shield printing technology is used to protect from the light-induced flavor deterioration.
Ministerial ordinance on milk and milk products was revised in October 2007; the use of PET container to milk was authorized. The deregulation by the ministerial ordinance revision is an opportunity for the milk container diversification, although there still have some problems to be solved with respect to container itself and investment cost of facilities in order to commercialize large-volume PET milk containers.