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Fruit and vegetable purees/biopolymer-based edible films reinforced with miniaturized cellulose fibers

Grant number: 13/14366-7
Support Opportunities:Scholarships in Brazil - Master
Effective date (Start): August 01, 2014
Effective date (End): May 31, 2015
Field of knowledge:Engineering - Materials and Metallurgical Engineering - Nonmetallic Materials
Principal Investigator:Luiz Henrique Capparelli Mattoso
Grantee:Caio Gomide Otoni
Host Institution: Embrapa Instrumentação Agropecuária. Empresa Brasileira de Pesquisa Agropecuária (EMBRAPA). Ministério da Agricultura, Pecuária e Abastecimento (Brasil). São Carlos , SP, Brazil


The polymers used in packaging industry must fulfill barrier and mechanical properties that assure the conservation and acceptability of the packaged product. Because petroleum-derived polymers are cost-effective and match those requirements, they are the most applied. However, the rising environmental concerns encourage the development of eco-friendly alternatives, such as polymers from renewable sources. Polysaccharides (e.g., cellulose and its derivatives) may be combined with fruit and vegetable purees containing vitamins, minerals and antioxidant compounds, in order to polymerize into edible films with unique nutritional and sensory properties. Also, the possibility of applying wastes from fruit and vegetable processing stands out as a promising feature. When compared to synthetic polymers, however, these biopolymers present lower barrier and mechanical properties, which motivate the addition of fillers to act as reinforcements, such as cellulose fibers. When miniaturized, these fibers are more evenly distributed within the polymeric matrix, preventing imperfections and enhancing their reinforcing efficiency. In that regard, the present work aims at studying the miniaturization of cellulose fibers through microfluidics, as well as their incorporation into novel hydroxypropyl methylcellulose added by peach or carrot puree. The films will be obtained by casting and characterized as to the properties which are essential to their commercial applications (e.g., mechanical, barrier, thermal, structural and nutritional). (AU)

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Scientific publications
(References retrieved automatically from Web of Science and SciELO through information on FAPESP grants and their corresponding numbers as mentioned in the publications by the authors)
OTONI, CAIO G.; LODI, BEATRIZ D.; LOREVICE, MARCOS V.; LEITAO, RENATO C.; FERREIRA, MARCOS D.; DE MOURA, MARCIA R.; MATTOSO, LUIZ H. C.. Optimized and scaled-up production of cellulose-reinforced biodegradable composite films made up of carrot processing waste. INDUSTRIAL CROPS AND PRODUCTS, v. 121, p. 66-72, . (13/14366-7, 14/23098-9)
OTONI, CAIO G.; LOREVICE, MARCOS V.; DE MOURA, MARCIA R.; MATTOSO, LUIZ H. C.. On the effects of hydroxyl substitution degree and molecular weight on mechanical and water barrier properties of hydroxypropyl methylcellulose films. Carbohydrate Polymers, v. 185, p. 105-111, . (13/14366-7, 14/23098-9)
FRANCO, GIULIANA T.; OTONI, CAIO G.; LODI, BEATRIZ D.; LOREVICE, V, MARCOS; DE MOURA, MARCIA R.; MATTOSO, LUIZ H. C.. Escalating the technical bounds for the production of cellulose-aided peach leathers: From the benchtop to the pilot plant. Carbohydrate Polymers, v. 245, . (14/23098-9, 13/14366-7, 19/06170-1)

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