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Migration Modelling is proof of evidence confirming the compliance of certain substances into foodstuff with their respective migration limits.
European Plastic Regulation (EU) No. 10/2011 defines three appropriate tools to prove compliance with specific restrictions in Article 16(2):
- Specific migration testing
- Worst case calculations
- Migration modelling
Scientific investigations have demonstrated that the migration from FCM into food follow predictable physical processes (diffusion models). Such diffusion models consider the lower migration speed of large molecules within the plastic, variable permeability of different polymer types, the influence of temperature and plastic thickness of a packaging.
In comparison to worst case calculations, those results are much more refined. This makes it possible to estimate the specific migration using a computer model/software that follows the JRC guideline on migration modelling (Publication No. JRC98028).
Migration modelling as a tool can be used in many different situations. Some of the most typical usages of the tool are:
According to the JRC guideline on migration modelling, it is legally acceptable to use migration modelling in order to prove compliance with a specific migration limit.
Predicting real life vs. accelerated scenarios:
In migration testing, accelerated test conditions (high temperature, short time) are applied for convenience. In contrast, Migration modelling allows for predicting and/or comparing the results of an accelerated test with a real-time scenario (lower temperature, longer time).
Research & Development:
In plastics, additives have different functions. Migration modelling can be used to predict/optimise how much you can add of a certain additive in respect to the specific migration limit, saving time and costs on trial & error testing.