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Eventually all petroleum-based material in food packaging will have to be replaced with bio-based material. Research done at Karlstad University shows that a mixture of starch and other polymers forms an equally effective protective barrier.
"Food packaging has to protect and extend the shelf life of food, and should also work during transport," says Asif Javed, doctor in Chemical Engineering at Karlstad University. "To meet these demands, a protective barrier is needed in paper-based packing such as those used for juice or dairy."
Food - Packaging - Coating - Water - Oxygen
Paper-based food packaging needs a coating to prevent water or oxygen from penetrating the packaging and spoiling the foodstuff inside. Usually this protective coating is manufactured from petroleum-based plastic. For several decades, researchers have been trying to find a good bio-based material to replace fossil-based raw materials. Research done at Karlstad University shows that a mixture of lignin from wood and starch from for example potatoes or maize potentially can fulfil this function just as well as plastic.
"In my research, we used a...
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