Technological watch

Development of sustainable ternary bionanocomposite film reinforced with nanocellulose and nanoclay for microbial efficacy

Abstract Synthetic plastic is the most anxious polymer in packing industry due to its non-biodegradability and biogeomagnification in the ecosystem. In light of the growing worldwide concern over synthetic polymers, natural and semi-synthetic biodegradable packaging materials with microbicide properties are receiving more attention in the food industry. The current research emphasises on the idea to convert a waste aquatic weed in to an advantageous eco-friendly substitute to a harmful biomagnifying food packing material. Water weed Eichhornia crassipes was used for the formation of hybrid films with nanocellulose and nanoclay coupled with green synthesised zinc oxide nanoparticles (NPs) by C. fistula fruit extract. Physicochemical properties of the starch-based binary nanocomposite (BNC) as well as ternary nanocomposite (TNC) were confirmed by TGA, DSC, SEM, EDX, FTIR and XRD analyses. The mechanical properties of both BNC and TNC were evaluated for its tensile strength, Young’s modulus and elongation break analysis. Further, the established ternary nanocomposite film with 2% ZnO NPs showed better surface morphology compared to the control binary films. Microbial efficacy studies revealed that the synthesised films are microbicidal in nature against foodborne pathogens Escherichia coli, Botrytis cinerea and Sclerotium rolfsii. The overall study accentuates that the green-based nanocomposites are eco-friendly, economically feasible and act as an effective route to overcome foodborne pathogens conferring them to be an alternative to petrochemical-based product.

Publication date: 29/03/2024

Journal of Materials 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.