Antimicrobial activity of whey protein isolate edible films with essential oils against food spoilers and foodborne pathogens.J Food Sci. 2012 Jul; 77(7):M383-90.JF
The use of antimicrobial edible film is proposed as a means of improving food safety and extending the shelf-life of food systems by controlling the release of antimicrobials on food surfaces. In this work we first selected and studied 8 different essential oils (EOs) from plants, namely, oregano, clove, tea tree, coriander, mastic thyme, laurel, rosemary, and sage as natural antimicrobials against 2 gram-positive bacteria (Listeria innocua and Staphylococcus aureus) and 2 gram-negative bacteria (Salmonella enteritidis and Pseudomona fragi) by using the agar disk diffusion method. EOs from oregano, clove, and tea tree produced the largest surfaces of inhibition against the growth of the 4 bacterial strains tested. Second and following the assessment of compatibility, stable antimicrobial edible films based on whey protein isolate (WPI) with increasing concentrations (0.5% to 9%) of the 8 EOs were developed and tested for antimicrobial activity against the same gram-positive and gram-negative bacteria. WPI-edible films incorporating oregano or clove EO were found to have the most intense inhibitory effect of microbial growth. The bacterial strain gram-negative P. fragi presented the less susceptibility to the effect of those films. Moreover, only the edible films based on these 2 EOs were active against all 4 studied microorganisms. On the other hand, the edible films incorporating tea tree, coriander, mastic thyme, laurel, rosemary, or sage EOs even at high concentrations (7% to 9%) did not cause any antimicrobial effect against the pathogens S. aureus or S. enteritidis.
Potential applications of this technology can introduce direct benefits to the food industry by improving safety and microbial product quality. The results of this research have direct application in the food industry with potential applications in various foodstuffs, including meat and poultry products where the control of spoilage bacteria such as P. fragi throughout their chilled storage or the improvement of food safety by controlling pathogens such as S. enteritidis are topics of particular interest for the industry.