Polymeric Packaging Applications for Seafood Products: Packaging-Deterioration Relevance, Technology and Trends
Seafood is a highly economical product worldwide. Primary modes of deterioration include autolysis, oxidation of protein and lipids, formation of biogenic amines and melanosis, and microbial deterioration. These post-harvest losses can be properly handled if the appropriate packaging technology has been applied. Therefore, it is necessary for packaging deterioration relevance to be clearly understood. This review demonstrates recent polymeric packaging technology for seafood products. Relationship between packaging and quality deterioration, including microbial growth and chemical and biochemical reactions, are discussed. Recent technology and trends in the development of seafood packaging are demonstrated by recent research articles and patents. Development of functional polymers for active packaging is the largest area for seafood applications. Intelligent packaging, modified atmosphere packaging, thermal insulator cartons, as well as the method of removing a fishy aroma have been widely developed and patented to solve the specific and comprehensive quality issues in seafood products. Many active antioxidant and antimicrobial compounds have been found and successfully incorporated with polymers to preserve the quality and monitor the fish freshness. A thermal insulator has also been developed for seafood packaging to preserve its freshness and avoid deterioration by microbial growth and enzymatic activity. Moreover, the enhanced biodegradable tray is also innovative as a single or bulk fish container for marketing and distribution. Accordingly, this review shows emerging polymeric packaging technology for seafood products and the relevance between packaging and seafood qualities.