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Front Microbiol. 2017 Sep 12;8:1735. doi: 10.3389/fmicb.2017.01735. eCollection 2017.

Nanotechnology: An Untapped Resource for Food Packaging.

Author information

1
Department of Dairy Microbiology, College of Dairy Science and Technology, Guru Angad Dev Veterinary and Animal Sciences UniversityLudhiana, India.
2
Department of Microbiology, D.A.V. College for GirlsYamuna Nagar, India.

Abstract

Food commodities are packaged and hygienically transported to protect and preserve them from any un-acceptable alteration in quality, before reaching the end-consumer. Food packaging continues to evolve along-with the innovations in material science and technology, as well as in light of consumer's demand. Presently, the modern consumers of competitive economies demands for food with natural quality, assured safety, minimal processing, extended shelf-life and ready-to-eat concept. Innovative packaging systems, not only ascertains transit preservation and effective distribution, but also facilitates communication at the consumer levels. The technological advances in the domain of food packaging in twenty-first century are mainly chaired by nanotechnology, the science of nano-materials. Nanotechnology manipulates and creates nanometer scale materials, of commercial and scientific relevance. Introduction of nanotechnology in food packaging sector has significantly addressed the food quality, safety and stability concerns. Besides, nanotechnology based packaging intimate's consumers about the real time quality of food product. Additionally, nanotechnology has been explored for controlled release of preservatives/antimicrobials, extending the product shelf life within the package. The promising reports for nanotechnology interventions in food packaging have established this as an independent priority research area. Nanoparticles based food packages offer improved barrier and mechanical properties, along with food preservation and have gained welcoming response from market and end users. In contrary, recent advances and up-liftment in this area have raised various ethical, environmental and safety concerns. Policies and regulation regarding nanoparticles incorporation in food packaging are being reviewed. This review presents the existing knowledge, recent advances, concerns and future applications of nanotechnology in food packaging sector.

KEYWORDS:

antimicrobial; nanoparticles; nanosensors; nanotechnology; packaging

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