How the food industry uses CO2

Canning and packaging

Filling packaging with CO2 or other gases preserves all manner of foods, including fruit and bread, by preventing certain bacteria from growing

Stunning animals for slaughter

Stunning is a key use of CO2. The gas has an anaesthetic effect, but at high concentrations it can also stop the brain from functioning, causing death

Carbonation

Added to fizzy drinks and some beers CO2 adds sparkle, affects flavour and helps preserve the drink, preventing the growth of bacteria and fungi. It is also used to dispense drinks from kegs

Decaffeinating coffee

‘Supercritical carbon dioxide’ – a form of CO2 with the properties of both a liquid and a gas – is passed through the coffee to dissolve the caffeine, leaving other substances intact

Canning and packaging

Filling packaging with CO2 or other gases preserves all manner of foods, including fruit and bread, by preventing certain bacteria from growing

Carbonation

Added to fizzy drinks and some beers CO2 adds sparkle, affects flavour and helps preserve the drink, preventing the growth of bacteria and fungi. It is also used to dispense drinks from kegs

Stunning animals for slaughter

Stunning is a key use of CO2. The gas has an anaesthetic effect, but at high concentrations it can also stop the brain from functioning, causing death

Decaffeinating coffee

‘Supercritical carbon dioxide’ – a form of CO2 with the properties of both a liquid and a gas – is passed through the coffee to dissolve the caffeine, leaving other substances intact