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  ICECHIM - Bioresources Dept.


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Development and modernization of food packaging film based on biopolymers and natural antimicrobial agents for increase of food security
Gas-chromatography analysis
X-ray diffraction
Optical microscopy
FT-IR spectroscopy
Elemental analysis


  • Financing: state budget - Executive Unit for Financing Higher Education, Research, Development and Innovation
  • Program: National Program for Research Development and Innovation II - Program 4- Partnerships in priority domains
  • Project type: Complex Projects
  • Acronym: ACTI-BIO-PACK
  • Financing agreement: 52-134 / 2008
  • Project value (including other attractable sources): 733.544,01 lei
  • Contract value (only state budget source) : 733.544,01 lei
  • Project Term: 38 months
  • Period of project: 01.10.2008 - 30.11.2011
  • Contractant: National Research & Development Institute for Chemistry and Petrochemistry - ICECHIM, Bucharest
  • Project manager: Eng. Liliana Anton - phone: 021-3163073/111; e-mail :

  • The general objective of ACTI-BIO-PACK project is to realize new and innovative bio-based antimicrobial packaging films for ensure food safety and security. The Project sign up for a recent and advanced class of food packaging systems known as "active packaging" in which the product, the package and the environment interact in a positive way to extend shelf-life, improving food safety and sensory properties, while maintaining the quality of packaged food.
    One of many application of active packaging is antimicrobial food packaging, able to kill or inhibit spoilage and pathogenic microorganisms that are contaminating foods. The new antimicrobial function can be achieved by adding antimicrobial agents in the polymeric matrix of packaging system, using as compatibility agents synthetic or natural additives. Today, the only bio-based additives for food packaging used commercially on a major scale are based on cellulose. Materials based on renewable resource matrices are being developed at an increasing rate. Biodegradable materials based on soy proteins, starch, poly-lactate and other renewable resources may be the food-packaging materials of tomorrow.
    The substantiation strategy of elaboration of an antimicrobial food film based on herbs and spices extract (essential oils) with antimicrobial activity on food borne pathogens and biodegradable additives as part of polymeric matrix, constituting a biopolymer, will conduct to labor new and innovative food packaging and technologies, able to release active compounds, by diffusion process, for enhancing the quality and safety of a wide range of food during extended storage.
    Consortium involved in this project is formatted from three National Research and Development Institutes, an University and a polymeric packaging manufacturing small and medium firm, a potential research beneficiary through a technological transfer in the future.
    Realization of a such project response to the changes in current consumer demands and market trends relating to more natural forms of preservation, and methods to control packaging and storage for safety assurance, quality maintenance of food and shelf-life extension.
    The Project will bring general health benefits by reducing the risk of food-borne illness caused by microbial contamination, reducing the exposure to chemicals related to the migration into foodstuffs of packaging materials, economical benefits through a increased marketing. Ranges of food packaging will be enriched, too, with a novel packaged film, antimicrobial and biodegradable, nontoxic, conform to world trend in this area (IFT Food Summit Report, Baltimore, 2006)

  • Project coordinator
    The National Institute for Research & Development in Chemistry and Petrochemistry ICECHIM, Bucharest
    202 Splaiul Independentei, Bucharest 6,
    Project manager - Eng. Liliana ANTON;
  • Partner P1
    National Institute of Research & Development for Food Bioresources - IBA Bucharest
    6 Dinu Vintila street, Bucharest 2,
    Project Responsible - Eng. Mariana IONESCU;
  • Partner P2
    “Cantacuzino" National Institute of Research-Development for Microbiology and Immunology Bucharest,
    103 Splaiul Independentei , Bucharest 5, www.
    Project Responsible - Conf. univ. dr. Irina CODITA ;
  • Partner P3
    Polytechnic University of Bucharest
    Splaiul Independentei nr. 313, sector 6, Bucharest,
    Project Responsible - Prof. dr. Eng. Horia IOVU;
  • Partner P4
    SC COROLA SA Focsani
    5 Marasesti street, Focsani, Vrancea
    Project Responsible - Ec. Florin CIUBOTARU;

  • Development and implementation of packaging films (biopolymers), new, innovative, and competitive, based on naturally derived substances and natural additives incorporated in polymeric matrix, to ensure food safety and security
  • Realization of biodegradable antimicrobial food packaging, with reduced impact against environment, signing in world demand for disposal manage

  • The substantiation of drawn up and testing strategy of antimicrobial film by identification and phytochemical presentation of aromatic plants with antimicrobial activity, by extraction methodology for essential oils and analytical procedures
  • Conceive of experimental model of antimicrobial food packaging and effectuation of preliminary biological tests
  • Realization of experimental model and elaboration of lab technologies for obtaining and utilization of antimicrobial food packaging
  • Chemical analysis of essential oils
  • Physico-mechanical characterization of films and physico-chemical characterization of them in food contact
  • Testing the antimicrobial activity of essential oils extracted from aromatic and medicinal plants and food films
  • Testing antimicrobial activity of films in food contact
  • Dissemination of research results
  • Filing of patent application

  • MILESTONE 1 - The substantiation of drawn up and testing strategy of antimicrobial film for bioactive food packaging. Development period: 01.10.2008 - 16.02.2009
  • MILESTONE 2 - Lab experiments for the purpose of realization of experimental model of antimicrobial food films obtaining. Development period: 17.02.2009 - 15.12.2009
  • MILESTONE 3 - Sample preparation. Antimicrobial agents and films characterization. Biological tests. Development period: 16.12.2009 - 10.12.2010
  • MILESTONE 4 - Elaboration of lab technologies for obtaining food packaging. Microbiological testing of films and food security verification. Development period: 11.12.2010 - 30.11.2011

  • Documentary Studies about:
    • Identification of aromatic plants with antimicrobial activity and their Phytochemical profile
    • Methods of extracting essential oils from plants
    • Techniques to obtain antimicrobial films; methods of testing activity antimicrobial oils and films in food contact
  • Project web site
  • Lab experimental products:
    • The essential oils extracted from basil, thyme, spearmint and coriander (4)
    • Compounding of polymers and natural and syntetic aditives (43)
    • Compounding of polymers and aditives with incorporated basil and thyme essential oils (2)
  • Study on thermal and mechanical properties of polymeric materials
  • Determination of thermal and mechanical properties of polymeric materials
  • Lab experimental products:
    • Experimental model - essential oils extracted from coriander, thyme, spearmint, rosemary, sage, carraway, fennel and basil (8)
    • Experimental model - antimicrobial food films containing essential oils (coriander, basil and thyme) incorporated in biopolymeric matrix (3)
  • Determination of chemical composition of essential oils obtained and the chemical structure of compounds
  • Analytical determination (physical, mechanical, optical and chemical) of food antimicrobial films intended for food contact (48)
  • Biological Screening for antimicrobial activity of essential oils and food films
  • Selection of essential oils with the best antimicrobial activity (3)
  • Studies:
    • Experimental Study on the determination of the retention capacity of essential oils in film structure
    • Study on correlation between chemical composition of essential oils and their antimicrobial activity
  • Methods:
    • Method for extraction of essential oils from native aromatic plants
    • Method of obtaining antimicrobial biopolymeric food films
    • Methods of testing antimicrobial activity of essential oils
    • Methods of testing antimicrobial activity of food films
    • Method of determining the global migration of components from films in food contact

  • Liliana Anton, Camelia Rovinaru, Elena Dobre, Maria Pana, Ana-Maria Popilian "Antimicrobial agents based on aromatic plants extracts for the food active packaging" - International Symposium - Chemistry for a sustainable development priorities - PRIOCHEM, Fifth Edition, Sinaia, 29 - 30 October 2009. Abstracts Volume / 2009 / 105 / ISBN 978-973-0-06996-9 /
  • B.E. Lixandru, C.C. Dragomirescu, E.C. Dragulescu, I. L. Coldea, L. Anton, E. Dobre, C.Rovinaru, I. Codita "Antimicrobial activity of essential oils from plants on the bacterial species involved in food poisoning" - The Second National Conference of Microbiology and Epidemiology, organized by the Romanian Society of Microbiology, Sinaia, 14 to 16 October 2010
  • L. Anton, M.Radu, E. Dobre, C. Rovinaru, A.M. Popilian, I. Codita, O.Dracea, C. Babes, B.Lixandru, E.C. Dragulescu, L.Coldea, M.Ionescu, V. Gagiu "Botanical extracts with antimicrobial activity for food active packaging" - National Symposium with international participation, priorities for sustainable chemistry - PRIOCHEM, Sixth edition, Bucharest, 28 to 29 October 2010. Abstracts Volume / 2010 /19 / ISBN 978-973-0-09284-4 /


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