Packaging is still necessary for food safety, according to the Food Safety Authority (FSAI).
It says a balance will need to be found in the move away from buying packaged goods.
The issue of packaging is among those being considered at an international food safety science conference in Dublin this week.
Environmental concerns have led to mounting calls for major reductions in the amount of packaging - particularly plastic - used in shops and supermarkets.
However, the FSAI notes that food packaging shows use by dates and important information for people with allergies.
Dr Pamela Byrne - Chief Executive of the FSAI - said packaging is also important if food makes someone sick.
She observed: "Very importantly, the packaging that's used on a lot of food products today gives us information in relation to where the product was manufactured and the company who manufactured the product.
"If, as a consumer, you're unfortunate enough to get sick as a result of consuming that particular food, then you can give us the information that we need in order to take that food off the market."
Dr Byrne added: "There's a balance to be had between removing packaging, but also making sure that if we're removing packaging that the information that consumers need to make safe food choices is available to them."
Meanwhile, the European Food Safety Authority says a more sustainable global food system is vital for the future.
It says people will need to eat more plants and waste less food.
Executive Director of the EFSA, Dr Bernhard Url, said we have to act now.
He argued: "Animal proteins need a lot of energy, water and land to be produced.
"We will have to reduce on a global level the consumption of animal proteins, and base our diets more on plants, vegetables, fruits."