NASA Takes Stand Up Pouches to Space

July 22, 2015

For 56 years, NASA has been a pioneer in space travel, aeronautics, and aerospace research.


Aside from sending Americans to faraway planets, the agency has developed a wide range of productsand services that have had a dramatic effect on the way we live. From cochlear implants to artificial limbs and “space blankets” found in first aid kits, NASA has played an important role in health and medicine.

In addition to these advancements, the agency has also had a hand in many notable food developments. After conducting extensive research on the best types of foods that can be consumed in outer space, NASA aided in the development of freeze drying, which retains the majority of a food’s nutrition and has been a huge part of food preservation and delivering nourishing meals to physically impaired adults.

So, what do all of these innovations have to do with stand up pouches and retail packaging?

Think about the food NASA provides to brave astronauts and space explorers. To keep products safe, its packaging must be placed in a lightweight container that preserves the food and keeps it sterile. There is little room for cans, boxes, and bottles in spaceships. That’s why retort pouches and other forms of flexible retail packaging are the go-to option for astronauts’ cuisine.

Beverages sent into space are packaged in vacuum-sealed beverage pouches, and astronauts are supplied with empty pouches for drinking water. Freeze-dried foods, such as ice cream, and other nutritious, easily digestible goods are packaged in flexible retail packaging like stand up pouches. Special time and care is put into the development and quality of the foods so they are shelf stable and can be stored at room temperature. Stand up pouches help to extend food’s shelf life, and keep them safe from microbial growth.

Scientists are currently using Mylar to create flexible packaging for space food, which packaging suppliers know is the perfect material for storing food for long periods of time. Mylar bags and pouches keep oxygen out and away from food during the packaging process. Mylar pouches are designed to hold both solid food and liquid beverages, and their strength, flexibility, and light weight are a great solution for space travel.

If vacuum stand up pouches, Mylar bags, and flexible pouches for beverages are good enough for a revolutionary company like NASA, we know they’re up to the standards of today’s producers and consumers. Fortunately, back on Earth, the food inside this flexible retail packaging probably tastes a little better. For more than 50 years, NASA’s space cuisine has evolved, and flexible retail packaging, spouted pouches, and barrier bags have had a significant impact on the transportability and ease of foods taken to infinity and beyond.