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Research Project: Adding Value to Plant-Based Waste Materials through Development of Novel, Healthy Ingredients and Functional Foods

Location: Healthy Processed Foods Research

Title: Improvement of water resistance and ductility of gelatin film by zein

item AHAMMED, SHABBIR - Jiangnan University
item LIU, FEI - Jiangnan University
item KHIN, MYAT NOE - Jiangnan University
item Yokoyama, Wallace - Wally
item ZHONG, FANG - Jiangnan University

Submitted to: Food Hydrocolloids
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 2/24/2020
Publication Date: 2/25/2020
Citation: Ahammed, S., Liu, F., Khin, M., Yokoyama, W.H., Zhong, F. 2020. Improvement of water resistance and ductility of gelatin film by zein. Food Hydrocolloids. 105. Article 105804.

Interpretive Summary: Plastic pollution is a worldwide problem. Biodegradable films based on renewable plant food sources are potential replacement for petroleum-based plastics. Gelatin, a protein derived from waste materials from animal and fish, forms films but do not have sufficient elasticity and breakdown readily in contact with water. Zein, a protein derived from corn, is insoluble in water. We investigated the development and properties of gelatin-zein composite films.

Technical Abstract: Gelatin films do not have sufficient water resistance to withstand high moist when used as food packaging. In this study, the water resistance property of gelatin film was firstly improved by compositing with hydrophobic zein for moist food packaging application. Zein was processed with gelatin at different ratio to form composite films. The solubility of the composite films in water decreased to 40% and the reduction of affinity to water was affirmed by higher water contact angle. The crystallinity percentage of the films were increased, detected by the x-ray diffraction (XRD), which might be also contributed in the water resistance. The modification in secondary structure of gelatin/zein was observed by FTIR spectroscopy. Moreover, zein also could improve the ductility of gelatin films in the presence of plasticizer. Elongation, a measure of ductility, of the films improved with up to 87%. Zein dispersed into gelatin homogeneously till 20% and higher concentrations result in large aggregates of zein molecules that lead to weakened molecular interaction. The aggregation of zein was observed by SEM to confirm the desirable gelatin/zein ratio.