Chapter 8: Packaging for Food Irradiation
Published:19 Dec 2017
M. Jamshidian and M. Lacroix, in Food Irradiation Technologies: Concepts, Applications and Outcomes, ed. I. C. F. R. Ferreira, A. L. Antonio, and S. Cabo Verde, The Royal Society of Chemistry, 2017, ch. 8, pp. 123-168.
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For decades, the suitability and safety of various kinds of packaging materials in food irradiation treatment have been under question. In this chapter, food packaging materials authorized to be in contact with food during irradiation are described. The impact of ionizing radiation due to cross-linking and chain scission on the mechanical and barrier properties of authorized polymers is also discussed. One of the major safety concerns related to food irradiation is the formation of radiolysis products (RPs) in the polymer and their subsequent potential migration into the irradiated food. A list of numerous RPs is provided and their safety assessments are discussed. Besides its bactericidal effect, irradiation can be used to develop biodegradable polymers and ameliorate the release of active agents from active packaging. Finally, the radiosensitization effect of irradiation combined with antimicrobial edible coatings and films on pathogenic bacteria in various types of foods is demonstrated.