Food and Bioprocess Technology

, Volume 5, Issue 3, pp 854–867 | Cite as

Nanoemulsions for Food Applications: Development and Characterization

  • Hélder Daniel Silva
  • Miguel Ângelo Cerqueira
  • António A. Vicente
Review Paper


The application of nanotechnology to food, medical and pharmaceutical industries has received great attention from the scientific community. Driven by the increasing consumers’ demand for healthier and safer food products and the need for edible systems able to encapsulate, protect, and release functional compounds, researchers are currently focusing their efforts in nanotechnology to address issues relevant to food and nutrition. Nanoemulsion technology is particularly suited for the fabrication of encapsulating systems for functional compounds as it prevents their degradation and improves their bioavailability. This review focuses on nanoemulsions and provides an overview of the production methods, materials used (solvents, emulsifiers, and functional ingredients) and of the current analytical techniques that can be used for the identification and characterization of nanoemulsions. Finally, nanotechnological applications in foods currently marketed are reported.


Nanoemulsions Encapsulation Functional compounds Analytical methods Characterization techniques 



M.A. Cerqueira (SFRH/BPD/72753/2010) is recipient of a fellowship from the Fundação para a Ciência e Tecnologia (FCT, Portugal).


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Hélder Daniel Silva
    • 1
  • Miguel Ângelo Cerqueira
    • 1
  • António A. Vicente
    • 1
  1. 1.IBB—Institute for Biotechnology and Bioengineering, Centre of Biological EngineeringUniversity of MinhoBragaPortugal

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