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Aloe vera/Chitosan-Based Edible Film with Enhanced Antioxidant, Antimicrobial, Thermal, and Barrier Properties for Sustainable Food Preservation

Food bioactive packaging has received increasing attention from consumers and the food industry for its potential to reduce food waste and environmental issues. Several materials can be used to produce edible films/coats; however, bio-based, cost-effective, and sustainable coatings have gained a high reputation these days. For instance, Aloe vera gel (AV) is a promising bio-based material for edible coatings and films; therefore, the present study aimed to investigate the film-forming abilities of AV and Chitosan (CH) combination as a potential active food packaging material. The physicochemical and mechanical characteristics of formed films of various combinations were prepared at different concentrations, i.e., CH (0.5% w/v), AV (100%), CH:AV (75:25), and CH:AV (60:40). The results showed significant differences among all the prepared edible films wherein these differences were mainly on account of incorporating AV gel. The rheological and antioxidant properties of the formulations improved with the inclusion of AV gel. The films composed of CH:AV (60:40) positively affected the water solubility, thermal properties, and water vapour permeability of the edible films. The X-ray Diffraction (XRD) and Scanning electron microscopy (SEM) results showed that the films composed of CH:AV, (60:40) were amorphous and had smooth morphology. Further, the edible film solutions were applied to fresh figs (Ficus carica) to investigate their role in preserving fruits during storage. A significant reduction in microbial growth was found in coated fruits after 28 days of cold storage. The films composed of CH and AV showed overall improved results compared to the CH (0.5%, w/v). Therefore, the used formulations (CH:AV, 60:40) can form a sustainable film that has the potential to be utilized for fresh product preservation to maintain its quality and shelf life.

Publication date: 15/01/2024

Author: Navjot Kaur

Reference: doi: 10.3390/polym16020242

MDPI (polymers)


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.