Technological watch

Recent Advances in pH-Responsive Freshness Indicators Using Natural Food Colorants to Monitor Food Freshness

Recently, due to the enhancement in consumer awareness of food safety, considerable attention has been paid to intelligent packaging that displays the quality status of food through color changes. Natural food colorants show useful functionalities (antibacterial and antioxidant activities) and obvious color changes due to their structural changes in different acid and alkali environments, which could be applied to detect these acid and alkali environments, especially in the preparation of intelligent packaging. This review introduces the latest research on the progress of pH-responsive freshness indicators based on natural food colorants and biodegradable polymers for monitoring packaged food quality. Additionally, the current methods of detecting food freshness, the preparation methods for pH-responsive freshness indicators, and their applications for detecting the freshness of perishable food are highlighted. Subsequently, this review addresses the challenges and prospects of pH-responsive freshness indicators in food packaging, to assist in promoting their commercial application.

Publication date: 25/06/2022

Author: Danfei Liu

Reference: doi: 10.3390/foods11131884

MDPI (foods)


This project has received funding from the Bio Based Industries Joint Undertaking under the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 837761.