Hyderabad, December 7 (IANS): Researchers at the National Institute of Technology (NIT) in Andhra Pradesh have developed nanotechnology-based food packaging materials that improve shelf life, maintain quality, retain flavor and color of food materials packed.
Nanoparticle-based materials offer a greater advantage over conventional, non-biodegradable packaging materials by improving the functional properties of foods such as bioavailability, taste and texture.
In the article, published in the Journal of European Food Research and Technology, the team highlighted the role of nanoparticles in providing mechanical stability to packaging material and shows how nanosensors can be developed to detect pathogens. , contamination, pesticides, and allergens and improves the antimicrobial properties of the packaging material to prevent spoilage and contamination of food.
“In addition to this, the role of inorganic nanoparticles in food preservation is to increase shelf life and the release of antioxidants protecting food from harmful ultraviolet radiation. The research also addresses food safety aspects related to nanomaterials. and follows environmentally friendly practices such as as appropriate labeling on food products, in accordance with disposal safety regulations, to perform cytotoxic studies in humans and animals, ”said Dr Tingirikari Jagan Mohan Rao, assistant professor, Department of Biotechnology, NIT Andhra Pradesh, in a statement.
In addition, the document also discussed the role of various government agencies in addressing safety concerns, bringing legislation and regulations on the use and application of nanomaterials.
It highlights how bio-based polymers can be blended with nanoparticles to make more efficient and effective packaging materials.
“Very little work has been done to assess the toxic effects of nanoparticles on mammalian cells under in vivo conditions. Inorganic nanoparticles are insoluble and pose a great challenge to bioaccumulate in human cells, which can lead to longer term biotoxicity. hindering its use in the food processing industry, ”Dr Punuri Jayasekhar Babu, Pachhunga University College, Mizoram University, said in the statement.
Nanotechnology is an emerging field of research as its application is growing day by day in various sectors including food and agriculture due to their vast physical, chemical and biological properties which are functionalized with several biomolecules to improve the properties of packaging and storage materials. .
Global applications of nanotechnology are estimated at around $ 3 trillion.