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Development of active packaging from biodegradable polymers

19. October 2022 10:00 h
platforma Zoom

Active packaging offers extended shelf life, ensures higher quality and safety of packaged products, as they actively influence storage conditions. Active packaging is produced by incorporating active ingredients (substances with antimicrobial and antioxidant activity) into the packaging material, which are subsequently released from the packaging material into the surrounding area. Due to stricter standards in the food industry and the prohibition of the use of many substances, the use of substances of natural origin, such as essential oils or key components of these oils, which inhibit the growth of certain strains of bacteria, is preferred.

The most used method for incorporating active substances into plastic films in the packaging industry is the extrusion process. However, this process has disadvantages such as possible volatilization or degradation of active agents due to the high-temperature values used during plastic processing. One of the successful techniques is supercritical impregnation using carbon dioxide (CO2). Thanks to this technique, organic compounds dissolved in supercritical CO2 are not susceptible to thermal degradation because the critical point of carbon dioxide is not extremely high (pc=7.4 MPa, Tc=37 °C).

The most used packaging materials are plastics. Conventional plastics have recently been replaced by bioplastics, e.g. poly(lactic acid) (PLA) and poly(butylene adipate terephthalate) (PBAT), which are attractive primarily due to their biodegradability and therefore environmental friendliness, contributing to the reduction of the waste and at the same time are not dependent on oil production.

Lecture within the project ÚCHP Mobilita II (CZ.02.2.69/0.0/0.0/18_053/0016920)

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