Production, characterization, and antimicrobial activity of almond gum/polyvinyl alcohol/chitosan composite films containing thyme essential oil nanoemulsion for extending the shelf-life of chicken breast fillets.Int J Biol Macromol. 2023 Feb 01; 227:405-415.IJ
In this study, thyme essential oil (TEO) nanoemulsion was immobilized within composite films based on almond gum (AG), polyvinyl alcohol (PVA), and chitosan (CS). The physical, mechanical, water barrier, microstructural and antimicrobial properties of composite films were assessed. Fourier-transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR) and X-ray diffraction (XRD) analysis confirmed the intermolecular interactions in the composite film matrix. The results indicated that the incorporation of TEO into the composite films increased thickness, moisture content, and water vapor permeability, while it reduced light transmittance and transparency value. The antimicrobial activity of films against gram-negative and gram-positive bacteria was tested using a disc diffusion method. The effect of composite on the microbiological properties of chicken breast fillets was investigated during refrigerated storage for 21 days. The microbial populations of total mesophilic, psychrotrophic, and lactic acid bacteria of the samples that were coated with the composite containing TEO were lower than the permitted limit after 21 days while for blank samples they were higher than 7 log CFU/g after 7 days which is considered as the maximum acceptable total count limit. Results disclosed that AG/PVA/CS composite films containing TEO nanoemulsion can be applied as eco-friendly active food packaging to enhance the shelf-life of food products.