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Testing the efficacy of chitosan-infused antimicrobial fresh fruit packaging

University of Greenwich

Project objectives

Fresh produce spoilage caused by fungal and bacterial growth can lead to significant amounts of food waste. The packaging used for fresh produce has great potential to help reduce food waste. The University of Greenwich’s Produce Quality Centre provides expertise and facilities to test packaging innovations to ensure they meet the needs of the industry. This project will test a novel packaging concept based on paper pulp infused with chitosan. Chitosan is a natural substance with built-in antimicrobial capability. Its antimicrobial properties work like a shield against spoilage-causing microorganisms. The hope is the new packaging technology will mean fruit stays fresher for longer, naturally resisting the bad microorganisms that cause them to spoil. The packaging is biodegradable. It will also be adaptable to different fruit shapes and sizes, providing a customised solution for growers, packers and retailers.

Lead Researcher: Debbie Rees
Industry: Packaged food and drink
Industry partners: Veraco Ltd
Topic: Packaging
Funded by: Growing Kent & Medway
Project start date: May-2024
Project end date: Jun-2025