Nanotechnology in Food Packaging

Nanomaterials are increasingly being used in the food packaging industry due to the range of advanced functional properties they can bring to packaging materials. Nanotechnology-enabled food packaging can generally be divided into three main categories - improved packaging, active packaging, intelligent /smart packaging. A coating of metal or glass, which are totally impermeable to gases, would prevent this from happening - this is obviously impractical however, as it would reduce flexibility, and would be much more expensive than plastic packaging. This is where nanotechnology comes to the rescue - a coating of clay nanoparticles just a few nanometres thick is sufficient to create an impermeable layer, without compromising on flexibility or adding a great deal to the cost. The most active area of food nanoscience research and development is packaging: the global nano-enabled food and beverage packaging market was 4.13 billion US dollars in 2008 and has been projected to grow to 7.3 billion by 2014, representing an annual growth rate of 11.65%.

  • Using Clay Nanoparticles to Improve Plastic Packaging for Food Products
  • Creating a Molecular Barrier by Embedding Nano crystals in Plastic Can Improve Packaging
  • Using Nanotechnology Methods to Develop Antimicrobial Packaging and ‘Active Packaging’
  • Embedded Sensors in Food Packaging and ‘Electronic Tongue’ Technology
  • Using a Nanotech Bio-switch in ‘Release on Command’ Food Packaging
  • Using Food Packaging Sensors in Defence and Security Applications
  • Problems in Industrial Food Production that Sensors and ‘Smart Packaging’ Will Not Address

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