Pectin as a biopolymer source for packaging films using a circular economy approach: Origins, extraction, structure and films properties
Butler, Ian P.
Banta, Russel A.
Tyuftin, Andrey A.
Holmes, Justin D.
Kerry, Joseph P.
The world currently faces a looming crisis, with both energy production and packaging manufacturing inextricably tied to the availability of oil. No biomaterial exists with sufficient universal properties to replace synthetic plastics. To date, research into renewable materials has remained largely focused on a select few biopolymers. Current research into the next generation biomaterials focuses on existing, sustainable, waste streams as a source of renewable polymers. Pectin, the focus of this current review, is a relatively cheap, widely available polysaccharide, usually extracted from apple pomace and fruit extracts. While widely employed in food products as a hydrocolloid, pectin has still not been widely investigated as a potential packaging material. In this review, the structure of pectin and its extraction are outlined, and the future of pectin within the compostable packaging field is established. The ramifications of failing to address the correct environmental measures and achieve a balanced carbon cycle are unavoidable. Identifying and utilizing what is currently described as waste or under-utilised, yet sustainable, materials which could reduce our dependence on oil is crucial. The established position of pectin in the food industry, and its processability on a commercial scale, give pectin significant advantage over alternative biopolymer materials for potential use in food packaging applications.
Pectin , Structure , Properties , Application , Packaging , Circular economy
Butler, I.P., Banta, R.A., Tyuftin, A.A., Holmes, J., Pathania, S. and Kerry, J. (2023) ‘Pectin as a biopolymer source for packaging films using a circular economy approach: Origins, extraction, structure and films properties’, Food Packaging and Shelf Life, 40, 101224 (13 pp). Available at: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.fpsl.2023.101224