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The History of Oxygen Absorbers and Biltong Preservation

In 1965, oxygen absorbers were invented in Japan utilising reduced iron salts. Later, as this methodology expanded into Europe and the United States in the 1970s, the technology improved along with new methods and raw material types.


The concept of using oxygen absorbers in biltong packages was first commercialised in the late 1970s. Since then they have been widely used in Asia but it wasn’t until approximately 2015 that South African manufactures began to use them. This was after KubePac was awarded exclusive distribution rights to distribute oxygen absorbers to South Africa.

The quality of oxygen absorbers continues to improve with regard to the raw material being more environmentally friendly, more effective, longer lasting and safer.


Within the past decade, oxygen absorber use has increased dramatically overseas. However, due to several variables within South Africa the use of oxygen absorbers by local food manufacturers is still predominantly low.


Oxygen absorbers from Kubepac work effectively as they use a breathable packaging material. To use an oxygen absorber several tests are conducted based on the customer requirements and the packaging dimensions. The food manufacturer then inserts the oxygen absorber into the packaging during the packaging process.


KubePac’s oxygen absorbers are approved by the international Food and Drug Administration so customers can be sure that they are safe to pack with food items.


Oxygen absorbers from Kubepac are able to greatly increase the storage time and preserve freshness of many products, such as biltong, without the use of chemicals or additives.


In addition to being more effective than other methods, oxygen absorbers are also very easy to use in both high-volume packaging or in a home kitchen environment. Automated dispensers are available for production lines, but a one-person muesli operation can also easily do their own packaging with no special equipment other than a hand-operated impulse sealer to heat-seal the pouches.


Although oxygen absorbers are gaining popularity for preserving many food products, virtually all biltong companies should be switching over to oxygen absorbers due to their superior effectiveness, affordability and ease of use.


Contact Leigh-Anne from KubePac on +84 835 7182 or alternatively email leigh@kubepac.com for more information on where you can buy oxygen absorbers in South Africa.



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