Algal Functional Foods and Nutraceuticals: Benefits, Opportunities, and Challenges

Edible Seaweed-Based Biodegradable Films and Coatings for Food and Nutraceutical Applications

Author(s): M.M. Jayakody, K.G. Kaushani and M.P.G. Vanniarachchy *

Pp: 429-446 (18)

DOI: 10.2174/9789815051872122010021

* (Excluding Mailing and Handling)


Accumulation of non-biodegradable plastics is causing high levels of environmental pollution. Currently, edible and biodegradable films and coatings for food and nutraceutical applications are a fast emerging technology with increased attention among researchers and consumers, which acts as an alternative to these synthetic plastics. Edible coatings are most commonly developed from polysaccharides and proteins. Among polysaccharides, seaweed-based polysaccharides play a vital role. These seaweed-based polysaccharides, which are utilized in the development of edible coatings and films, include Agar, Alginate, and carrageenan. Alginates are extracted from brown algae, while agar and carrageenan are extracted from red algae varieties. These developed coatings and films are commonly applied to extend the shelf life and maintain the desired quality level in food. These films or coatings can be applied to foods such as fruits, vegetables, meat, poultry, seafood, and dairy products. They improve the quality of the product by retarding moisture loss, reducing lipid oxidation and discoloration, sealing in volatile flavors, and functioning as carriers of food additives such as antimicrobial and antioxidant agents. This book chapter discusses the application of seaweed-based biodegradable films and coatings for food and nutraceuticals.

Keywords: Agar, Active Packages, Alginate, Applications, Biodegradable Packages, Carrageenan, Coatings, Composite Films, Eco-Friendly, Edible Packages, Films, Food, Lipids, Nutraceuticals, Plasticizers, Polysaccharides, Primary Packages, Seaweeds, Stabilizers, Technology.

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