Submitted to: Meeting Abstract
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 7/16/2008
Publication Date: 8/17/2008
Citation: Liu, L.S., Jin, Z.T., Coffin, D.R., Hicks, K.B. 2008. Active packaging materials from Poly(Lactic Acid)and Pectin composites. Meeting Abstract.
Technical Abstract: Active packaging of foods is receiving considerable attention from the food industry and food researchers. The ability to wrap foods in packaging materials that can provide additional functions, such as retaining freshness or preventing spoilage and pathogen growth, would be very important for the food industry as well as the food consumer. Few active packaging materials are currently available and those that exist are expensive and have limited functionality. We have conducted research leading to the production of a series of biodegradable and anti-microbial active packaging materials made from poly(lactic acid), pectin, and nisin. The resultant composite films were evaluated for structural and mechanical properties, antimicrobial activities, and biodegradability. Methods to prepare these materials were also optimized. Samples prepared by a one-step extrusion process at low temperature possessed mechanical properties similar to those of extruded pure PLA and were able to retain 100% of the antimicrobial activity of the co-extruded polypeptide against L. monocytogenes. The incorporated nisin released from the matrix in a controlled manner for at least 3 weeks. In addition, the one-step method is simple and more economic in comparison with other methods.