Smart Packaging, Food Packaging Technology Based Nanocomposite

Increased market demand for new, up- to -date, ready to eat , and stable products lead to technological innovations of food product packaging should continue.

Packaging technology has continued to change over the last few decades. The packing function begins to shift from being just a place to store food, and switch functions to prevent deterioration, extend shelf life, and maintain product quality and safety. Currently, packaging plays a role in protecting food from external environmental influences such as heat, light, moisture, oxygen, pressure, enzymes, foreign odors, microorganisms, dirt and dust particles, gases, etc. that can cause product decay. The current packaging also serves as a medium for placing product information such as brands and nutritional content. [1]

Ideal food packaging should meet several criteria of which must be strong so as to facilitate handling during transportation, cheap so that products are more competitive, and safe for consumers. Packaging should also be attractive in order to attract consumers.

Product marketing analysis incorporates packaging into one of the factors that play an important role after product, price, place or location, and promotion (5P: product, price, place, promotion, packaging ). Furthermore, an increase in market demand for new, up- to -date, ready to eat , and stable products leads to food packaging product innovation to continue to meet these demands [1] . Packaging technology is expected to answer the challenge is smart packaging that can be categorized into two, namely active packaging and intelligent packaging.

Active and intelligent packaging is designed with different functions. Active packaging is developed to extend the shelf life of the product and is also designed to improve the quality and safety of the product. Intelligent packaging allows packaging to communicate with consumers by displaying special signs on the packaging to mark the condition of the product contained in the packaging. Here is an example of smart packaging that has been applied to some food industries .


Figure 1.  Active packaging on fruit products to extend shelf life by modified atmosphere packaging  method  [4]


Figure 2.  Intelligent packaging  with a fresh meter on the packaging [5]

Nanocomposites are made from the incorporation of nanofillersthat have dimensions of nano dimensions (1-100 nm)

The material that has great potential to be used for the development of smart packaging is the nanocomposite. Composites consist of polymer matrix ( continuos phase ) and filler ( discontinuos phase ). Nanocomposites are made from the incorporation of nanofillers that have dimensions of nano dimension (1-100 nm) [2] . Nanocomposites have the advantage of improving the quality of packing inhibition of the gas, increasing packaging strength, and having better heat resistance properties of conventional polymers and composites, as well as improving packaging biodegradation [3] . The use of nanocomposite in active packaging has been widely practiced, especially by exploiting the antibacterial properties of the nanocomposite film.

To date, many nanoparticles have been identified as  nanocomposite polymer fillers to improve packaging performance. Among these nanoparticles, nanoclays become one of the main concerns of world researchers. This is due to its abundant, inexpensive, and easy to process.

The addition of low amounts of nanoclays can increase packaging rigidity, heat stability, and inhibition of gas and steam. In addition, the addition of nanoclays to a biopolymer matrix such as chitosan or methyl cellulose has also been shown to have no effect on the material degradation properties. Some nanoclays are also capable of spreading UV radiation. This property is very important to be applied to food packaging that serves to protect food from light. Nanoclays are also able to control the release of certain substances applied to active packaging technology [1] .


Figure 3. Type of interaction of polymer-nanoclays composite  [6]

The material that can be used as a polymer in the manufacture of nanocomposite polymers is cellulose. Cellulose is very cheap and easy to find. In addition, this material is also environmentally friendly, easy to recycle and low energy consumption levels during processing. This makes cellulose nanofiller very attractive to be developed as a cheap, lightweight, and high-nanocomposite [1] .

Baca juga:

Nanocomposites have the advantage of improving the quality of packing inhibition of the gas, increasing packaging strength, and having better heat resistance properties of conventional polymers and composites, as well as increasing packaging biodegradation.


[1] Sanchez MD and Lagaron JM. 2012. Nanocomposite for food and beverage packaging material. Food Materials Science and Engineering . Editor: Bhandari B and Roos YH. Willey-Blackwell.

[2] Honavar Z, Hadian Z, Mashayekh M. 2016. Nanocomposite in food packaging application and their risk assessment for health. Electronic Physician 8 (6): 2531-2538.

[3] Bratovčić A, Odobašić A, Ćatić S, Šestan I. 2015. Application of polymer nanocomposite materials in food packaging. Croat J. Food Sci. Technol 7 (2): 86-94.

[4] Easyfruit project extends fruit life. (Retrieved on February 20, 2018).

[5] Packaging digest. (Retrieved on February 20, 2018).

[6]  Alexandre M. & Dubois P. 2000. Polymer-layered silicate nanocomposites: preparation, properties and uses of a new class of materials. Materials Science and Engineering , R: Reports, Vol. 28, 1-63.

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