Affiliation: Agricultural Engineering Research Institute (AERI), Zarghan, Fars, Postal Code: 73415-111, Iran.
Edible films/coatings have been considered as one of the potential technologies that can be used to increase the storability of foods and to improve the existent packaging technology, helping to ensure the microbial safety and the preservation of food from the influence of external factors. Innovations constantly appear in food packaging, always aiming at creating a more efficient quality preservation system while improving foods' attractiveness and marketability. The utilization of renewable sources for packaging materials, such as hydrocolloids and lipids from biological origin, is one the main trends of the industry. These films should have acceptable sensory characteristics, appropriate barrier properties (CO2, O2, water, oil), microbial, biochemical and physicochemical stability, they should be safe, and produced by simple technology in low cost. Also they can act as effective carrier for antioxidant, flavor, color and nutritional or anti-microbial additives. Nowadays, a great discussion exists about the potential applications of edible films/coatings on food products. The general trend is to find the correct combination between the food product and the edible film/coating, which will ensure the success of the technology.