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Review on functionalized pectin films for active food packaging

This review article focuses on pectin films for active packaging. The review emphasizes on sources of pectin, methods of development of pectin?based films, detailed summary on the types of bio?active agents and their incorporation on pectin films, analysing their impact on the film properties and its applications for food packaging.Owing to environmental distresses and growing demands for food safety, biopolymers have found noble applications in food packaging films as they are biodegradable, biocompatible and non?toxic. Pectin, polysaccharide based biomass was considered a promising substrate in fabricating polymeric films because of its advantages concerning film?forming ability, low cost, bioactivity, compatibility with other polymers with a distinctive oxygen barrier capacity, which helps in improving shelf life of commodities. Introducing active agents into the packaging films focus to prolong the shelf life and preserve the sensorial quality and safety of packaged foods devoid of contamination. Antimicrobial agents or secondary metabolites derived from plants and fungi are perceived as promising natural bio?active agents integrated into films to prevent microbial deterioration. Pectin has been greatly utilized in active packaging films incorporated with natural additives such as essential oils, nanoparticles, free fatty acids and phenolic compounds that inhibit/retard the growth of major foodborne pathogens. The above?mentioned functionalization of pectin films with bio?active compounds enhanced microbial resistance and contemporarily influenced the mechanical strength and barrier properties of the film. This review is intended to focus on the background of pectin, its source and the utilization of pectin in active packaging films, and the types and method of incorporation of natural compounds. Specific emphasis has been given to the types of bioactive compounds incorporated into pectin films and their impact on the functional properties of the films. This review will benefit researchers in exploring innovative methods of incorporating bioactive compounds into pectin?based films.

Publication date: 11/01/2024

Packaging Technology and Science


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.