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Effect of different animal fat and plant oil additives on physicochemical, mechanical, antimicrobial and antioxidant properties of chitosan films.


Practical application of chitosan-essential oil blend films is limited due to the uneconomical extraction procedure of essential oils from plants. This study aimed to produce chitosan films blended with low cost and commercially available oils and fats consumed in daily human diet (olive, corn and sunflower oils, butter and animal fats). The study also focused on how physicochemical, biological and mechanical properties of chitosan blend films were influenced by the incorporation of oils and fats with varying unsaturation degrees. Possible interactions of chitosan film matrix with incorporated oils or fats were investigated. Chitosan-olive oil film showed better surface morphology and higher thermal stability than the films with other unsaturated oils. Tensile strength, Young's modulus and elongation at break were improved by 57.2%, 25.1% and 31.7% for chitosan-olive oil film, respectively. Chitosan-olive oil blend film had the highest antibacterial activity (almost equal to that of commercial antibiotic gentamicin). Edible films obtained from by incorporation of natural oils and fats into chitosan can help produce an environmentally friendly packaging material that is low cost and easily manufactured.