Journal of Food Science and Technology

, Volume 52, Issue 10, pp 6125–6135 | Cite as

Smart packaging systems for food applications: a review

  • K. B. Biji
  • C. N. Ravishankar
  • C. O. Mohan
  • T. K. Srinivasa Gopal
Review Article


Changes in consumer preference for safe food have led to innovations in packaging technologies. This article reviews about different smart packaging systems and their applications in food packaging, packaging research with latest innovations. Active and intelligent packing are such packaging technologies which offer to deliver safer and quality products. Active packaging refers to the incorporation of additives into the package with the aim of maintaining or extending the product quality and shelf life. The intelligent systems are those that monitor the condition of packaged food to give information regarding the quality of the packaged food during transportation and storage. These technologies are designed to the increasing demand for safer foods with better shelf life. The market for active and intelligent packaging systems is expected to have a promising future by their integration into packaging materials or systems.


Active packaging Intelligent packaging Freshness indicator RFID 


  1. Abeles FB, Morgan PW, Saltveit ME (1992) Ethylene in plant biology. Academic press Inc, San Diego, CaliforniaGoogle Scholar
  2. Ahvenainen R (2003) Active and intelligent packaging: an introduction. In: Ahvenainen R (ed) Novel food packaging techniques, Wood head Publishing Ltd, Cambridge UK, pp 5–21CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Alocilja EC, Radke SM (2003) Market analysis of biosensors for food safety. Biosens Bioelectron 18:841–846CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Anon (1995) Ensuring product freshness with new desiccant product. Food Marketing and Technology 10:75–77Google Scholar
  5. Appendini P, Hotchkiss JH (2002) Review of antimicrobial food packaging. Innov Food Sci Emerg 3:113–126CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Arvanitoyannis IS, Stratakos AC (2012) Application of modified atmosphere packaging and active/smart technologies to red meat and poultry: A review. Food Bioprocess Tech 5(5):1423–1446Google Scholar
  7. Avery Dennison (2011) Roll-to-roll processing. Accessed 9 September 2014
  8. Blankenship SM, Dole JM (2003) 1-Methylcyclopropene: a review. Postharvest Biol Tec 28:1–25CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Blixt Y, Borch E (1999) Using an electronic nose for determining the spoilage of vacuum-packaged beef. Int J Food Microbiol 46:123–134CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Bodenhamer WT, Jackowski G, Davies E (2004) Toxin Alert: Surface binding of an immunoglobulin to a flexible polymer using a water soluble varnish matrix. United States patent: 66992973Google Scholar
  11. Brody AL, Strupinsky ER, Kline LR (2001) Odor removers. In: Brody AL, Strupinsky ER, Kline, LR, (ed) Active Packaging for Food Applications. Technomic Publishing Company Inc, Lancaster, PA, p 107–117Google Scholar
  12. Brody AL, Strupinsky ER, Kline LR (2002) Active packaging for food applications. CRC press, Boca RatonGoogle Scholar
  13. Brody AL, Bugusu B, Han JH, Sand CK, Mc Hugh T (2008) Innovative food packaging solutions. J Food Sci 73 (8): R 107–116Google Scholar
  14. Cha DS, Chinnan MS (2004) Biopolymer-based antimicrobial packaging: a review. Crit Rev Food Sci 44:223–237CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Cuq B, Gontard N, Guilbert S (1995) Edible films and coatings as active layers. In: Rooney ML (ed) Active food Packaging. Blackie Academic and Professional, Glasgow, UK, pp. 111–142CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Davies ES, Gardner CD, inventors (1996) Oxygen indicating composition. British Patent 2298273Google Scholar
  17. Dawson PL, Han IY, Padgett TR (1997) Effect of lauric acid on nisin activity in edible protein packaging film. Poultry Sci 76-74Google Scholar
  18. Day BPF (1998) Active packaging of foods. Campden and Chorleywood Food Research Association. Chipping Campden, Glos, UKGoogle Scholar
  19. Day BPF (2003) Active packaging. In: Coles R, McDowell D, Kirwan M (eds) Food packaging technologies. CRC press, Boca Raton, FL, USA, pp. 282–302Google Scholar
  20. Day BPF (2008) Active packaging of food. In: Kerry J, Butler PJ (eds) Smart packaging technologies for fast moving consumer goods. Wiley and sons Ltd, West Sussex, EnglandGoogle Scholar
  21. De-Azeredo HMC (2009) Nano composites for food packaging applications. Food Res Int 42:1240–1253CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Devi R, Yadav S, Nehra R, Yadav S, Pundir CS (2013) Electrochemical biosensor based on gold coated iron nanoparticles/chitosan composite bound xanthine oxidase for detection of xanthine in fish meat. J Food Eng 115(2):207–214CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Dobrucka R, Cierpiszewski R (2014) Active and Intelligent Packaging Food Research and Development- A Review. Pol J Food Nutr Sci 64(1):7–15Google Scholar
  24. Dolmaci N, ÇeteS AF, Yaşar A (2012) Anamperometric biosensor for fish freshness detection from xanthine oxidase immobilized in poly-pyrrole poly vinyl sulphonate film. Artif Cells Nanomed Biotechnol 40(4):275–279Google Scholar
  25. Emco Packaging (2013) Oxygen indicator labels. Oxygen indicating colour change chemistry. php/products/oxygen-indicator-labels. Accessed 22 September 2014
  26. Floros JD, Dock LL, Han JH (1997) Active packaging technologies and applications. Food Chem Drug Packag 20:10–17Google Scholar
  27. Fu B, Labuza TP (1995) Potential use of time-temperature indicators as an indicator of temperature abuse of MAP products. In: Farber JM, Dodds KL (eds) Principals of modified atmosphere and sous vide product packaging. Technomic Publishing Co. Inc, Pennsylvania, pp. 385–423Google Scholar
  28. Gardner JW, Bartlett PN (1993) A brief history of electronic noses. Sensor Actuat B-Chem 18:211–220Google Scholar
  29. Gennadios A, Hanna MK, Kurth LB (1997) Application of edible coatings on meat, poultry and seafoods. A review Lebensmittel Wissens chaft and Technologie 30:337–350CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Gòmez AH, Hu G, Wang J, Pereira AG (2006) Evaluation of tomato maturity by electronic nose. Computers Electr Agric 54:44–52CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Han JK, Miltz J, Harte BR, Giacin JR, Gray IJ (1987) Loss of 2-tertiary-butyl-4-methoxy phenol (BHA) from HDPE film. Polym Eng Sci 27:934–938CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Han JH (2000) Antimicrobial Food Packaging. Food Technol 54(3):56–65Google Scholar
  33. Heising JK, Dekker M, Bartels PV, Van Boekel MA (2014) Monitoring the quality of perishable foods: opportunities for intelligent packaging. Crit Rev Food Sci Nutr 54(5):645–654CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Hogan SA, Kerry JP (2008) Smart packaging of meat and poultry products. In: Kerry J, Butler P (eds) Smart packaging technologies for fast moving consumer goods. John Wiley & Sons Ltd, West Sussex, England, pp. 33–59CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. Hong H, Dang J, Tsai Y, Liu C, Lee W,Chen P (2011). An RFID application in the food supply chain: A case study of convenience stores in Taiwan. J Food Eng106:119–126Google Scholar
  36. Hoshino A, Osanai T, inventors (1986) Packaging films for deodorization. Japanese patent 86209612.Google Scholar
  37. Hotchkiss J (1997) Food packaging interactions influencing quality and safety. Food Addt Contam 14(6):601–607CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. Ishitani T (1995) Active packaging for food quality preservation in Japan. In: Ackermann P, Jagerstad M, Ohlsonn T (eds) Food and food packaging materials chemical interactions. Royal society of chemistry, Cambridge, England, pp. 77–188Google Scholar
  39. Jedermann R, Ruiz-Garcia L, Lang W (2009) Spatial temperature profiling by semi-passive RFID loggers for perishable food transportation. Comput Electron Agr 65:145–154CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. Jones P, Clarke-Hill C, Shears P, Comfort D, Hillier D (2004) Radio frequency identification in the UK: opportunities and challenges. Int J Retail Distrib Manag 32(3):164–171CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  41. Jung J, Puligundla P, Ko S (2012) Proof-of-concept study of chitosan-based carbon dioxide indicator for food packaging applications. Food Chem 135(4):2170–2174CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  42. Kelly CA, Murray G M, Uy OM, inventors (2005) Method of making a polymeric food spoilage sensor. U.S. Patent 6924147Google Scholar
  43. Kerry JP, O’Grady MN, Hogan SA (2006) Past, current and potential utilisation of active and intelligent packaging systems for meat and muscle-based products: A review. Meat Sci 74:113–130CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  44. Kerry JP (2014) New packaging technologies, materials and formats for fast-moving consumer products. In: Han JH (ed) Innovations in food packaging. 2nd edn.: Academic Press, San Diego, USA, pp 549–584Google Scholar
  45. Kress-Rogers E (1998) Chemosensors, biosensors and immune sensors. In: Kress-Rodgers E (ed) Instrumentation and sensors for the food industry. Woodhead Publishing Ltd, Cambridge, UK, pp. 581–669Google Scholar
  46. Kuswandi B, Jayus RA, Abdullah A, Heng LY, Ahmad M (2012) A novel colorimetric food package label for fish spoilage based on polyaniline film. Food Control 25(1):184–189CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  47. Kuswandi B, Maryska C, JayusRA AA, Heng LY (2013) Real time on-package freshness indicator for guavas packaging. Food Measure 7:29–39CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  48. Kuswandi B, Jayus RA, Oktaviana R, Abdullah A, Heng LY (2014) A novel on-package sticker sensor based on methyl red for real-time monitoring of broiler chicken cut freshness. Packag Technol Sci 27(1):69–81CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  49. Labusa TP (1987) Oxygen scavenger sachets. Food res 32:2776–2277Google Scholar
  50. Labuza TP, Breene WM (1989) Applications of active packaging for improvement of shelf life and nutritional quality of fresh and extended shelf life foods. J Food Process Pres 13:1–69CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  51. Labuza TP (1996) An introduction to active packaging for foods. Food Technol 50:68–71Google Scholar
  52. Lee K, Ko S (2014) Proof-of-concept study of a whey protein isolate based carbon dioxide indicator to measure the shelf-life of packaged foods. Food Sci Biotechnol 23(1):115–120CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  53. Liu Y, Chakrabartty S, Alocilja E (2007) Fundamental building blocks for molecular bio-wire based forward error-correcting biosensors. Nanotechnology 18:1–6Google Scholar
  54. Lopez-Rubio A, Almenar E, Hernandez-Munoz P, Lagaron JM, Catala R, Gavara R (2004) Overview of active polymer based packaging technologies for food applications. Food Rev Int 20(4):357–387Google Scholar
  55. Marsh K, Bugusu B (2007) Food packaging: Roles, materials, and environmental issues. J Food Sci 72:39–55CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  56. Mattila-Sandholm T, Ahvenainen R, Hurme E, Ja¨rvi-Ka ¨a¨ria ¨nen T, inventors (1995) Leakage indicator. Finnish Patent 94802Google Scholar
  57. Mattila-Sandholm T, Ahvenainen R, Hurme E, Ja¨rvi-Ka ¨a¨ria ¨nen, T, inventors (1998) Oxygen sensitive colour indicator for detecting leaks in gas protected food packages. European Patent EP 0666977Google Scholar
  58. Mills A, Qing Chang Q, Mc Murray N (1992) Equilibrium studies on colorimetric plastic film sensors for carbon dioxide. Anal Chem 64:1383–1389CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  59. Miltz J, Passy N, Mannheim CH (1995) Trends and applications of active packaging systems. In: Jagerstad M, Ohlsson M (eds) AckermanP. Food and packaging materials-Chemical interaction. The Royal Society of Chemistry, London, England, pp. 201–210Google Scholar
  60. Ming X, Weber GH, Ayres JW, Sandine WE (1997) Bacteriocins applied to food packaging materials to inhibit Listeria monocytogenes on meats. J Food Science 62(2):413–415CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  61. Mitsubishi Gas Chemical (2014) AGELESS EYE oxygen indicator.http://wwwmgccojp/eng/products/abc/ageless/eyehtml Accessed 22nd September 2014Google Scholar
  62. Morris SC (1999) Odour proof package. Patent No WO1999025625A1Google Scholar
  63. Nachay K (2007) Analyzing nanotechnology. Food Technol 61(1):34–36Google Scholar
  64. Neurater G, Klimant I, Wolfbeis OS (1999) Microsecond life time based optical carbon dioxide sensor using luminescence resonance energy transfer. AnalyticaChimicaActa 382:67–75Google Scholar
  65. Nicholson MD (1997) The role of natural antimicrobials in food packaging preservation. Proceedings of Future Pack. George O Schroeder Associates Inc Appleton, WisconsinGoogle Scholar
  66. O'Grady MN, Kerry JP (2008) Smart packaging technologies and their application in conventional meat packaging systems. In: Toldrá F (ed) Meat Biotechnology. Springer Science and Business Media. New York, USA, pp. 425–451CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  67. Padgett T, Han IY, Dawson PL (1998) Incorporation of food-grade antimicrobial compounds into biodegradable packaging films. J Food Protect 61(10):1330–1335Google Scholar
  68. Paine FA (1991) The packaging users handbook. AVI, Van Nostrand Reinhold, New York, USAGoogle Scholar
  69. Papkovsky DB, Smiddy MA, Papkovskaia NY, Kerry JP (2002) Nondestructive measurement of oxygen in modified atmosphere packaged hams using a phase-fluorimetric sensor system. J Food Sci 67:3164–3169CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  70. Perry MR, Lentz RR (2009) Susceptors in microwave packaging. In: Lorence MW, Pesheck PS (eds) Development of packaging and products for use in microwave ovens. Woodhead Publishing Limited, Cambridge, UK, pp. 207–236CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  71. Pospiskova K, Safarik I, Sebela M, Kuncova G (2013) Magnetic particles-based biosensor for biogenic amines using an optical oxygen sensor as a transducer. Microchem Acta 180:311-318Google Scholar
  72. Quintavalla S, Vicini L (2002) Antimicrobial food packaging in meat industry. Meat Sci 62:373–380CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  73. Rajamäki T, Alatomi H, Titvanen T, Skyttä E, Smolander M, Ahvenainen R (2004) Application of an electronic nose for quality assessment of modified atmosphere packaged poultry meat. Food Contr 17:5–13CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  74. Realini CE, Marcos B (2014) Active and intelligent packaging systems for a modern society. Meat Sci 98:404–419CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  75. Regier M (2014) Microwavable food packaging. In: Han JH (ed) Innovations in food packaging. Academic Press, San Diego, USA, pp. 495–514CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  76. Restuccia D, Spizzirri UG, Parisi O, Cirillo G, Curcio M, Iemma F, Puoci F, Vinci G, Picci N (2010) New EU regulation aspects and global market of active and intelligent packaging for food industry applications. Food Control 21:1425–1435CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  77. Robertson G (2006) Food packaging principles and practices. Taylor & Francis, Boca Raton, FlaGoogle Scholar
  78. Rooney ML (1995) Overview of active food packaging. In: Rooney ML (ed) Active food packaging. Blackie Academic & Professional, Glasgow, pp 1–37CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  79. Rooney ML (2005) Introduction to active food packaging technologies. In: Han JH (ed) Innovations in Food Packaging. Elsevier Ltd, London, UK, pp. 63–69CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  80. Ruiz-Garcia L, Lunadei L (2011) The role of RFID in agriculture: Applications, limitations and challenges. Comput Electron Agr 79:42–50CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  81. Sajilata MG, Savita K, Singhal RS, Kanetka VR (2007) Scalping of Flavors in Packaged Foods. Compr Rev Food Sci F 6(1):17–35CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  82. Sarac A, Absi N, Dauzère-Pérès S (2010) A literature review on the impact of RFID technologies on supply chain management. Int J of Prod Econ128 (1): 77–95Google Scholar
  83. Singh RP (2000) Scientific principles of shelf life evaluation. In: ManD, Jones A (ed) Shelf life evaluation of food. 2nd edn. Aspen Publishers, Gaithersburg, Md, pp 3–22Google Scholar
  84. Sirane (2011) A-Crisp™ boxes, boards, sleeves and liners for crisping in a microwave. Accessed 10 September 2014.
  85. Sivertsvik M (2000) Use of soluble gas stabilization top extend shelf life of fish. In: proceedings of 29th WEFTA meeting. Leptocarya, Pieria, Greece, 10-14October 2000Google Scholar
  86. Sivertsvik M, Rosnes JT, Kleiberg GH (2003) Effect of modified atmosphere packaging and super chilled storage on the microbial and sensory quality of Atlantic salmon (Salmosalar) fillets. J Food Sci 68:1467–1472CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  87. Sivertsvik M, Jeksrud WK, Vagane A, Rosnes JT (2004) Solubility and absorption rate of carbon dioxide into non respiring foods. Development and validation of experimental apparatus using a monometric method J Food Eng 61:449–458Google Scholar
  88. Sivertsvik M (2007) Lessons from other commodities: Fish and meat. In: Wilson CL (ed) Intelligent and active packaging for fruits and vegetables. CRC press, Boca Raton, London, pp. 151–161CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  89. Smith JP, Ramaswamy HS, Simpson BK (1990) Developments in food packaging technology. Part II. Storage aspects. Trends Food Sci Tech 1:111–118CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  90. Smith JP, Hoshino J, Abe Y (1995) Interactive packaging involving sachet technology. In: Rooney ML (ed) Active food packaging. Blackie Academic and Professional, London, UK, pp. 143–173CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  91. Suppakul P, Miltz J, Sonneveld K, Bigger SW (2003) Active packaging technologies with an emphasis on antimicrobial packaging and its applications. J Food Sci 68:408–420CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  92. Tajima M (2007) Strategic value of RFID in supply chain management. J Purch Supply Manag 13:261–273CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  93. Takashi H, inventor (1990) Japanese patent 2113849Google Scholar
  94. Tempix (2014) The Tempix temperature indicator. Accessed 14 September 2014.
  95. Todorovic V, Neag M, Lazarevic M (2014) On the Usage of RFID Tags for tracking and monitoring of shipped perishable goods. Procedia Engineering 69:1345–1349CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  96. VacPac (2014) SmartPouch®Susceptor technology for superior cooking. Accessed 15 September2014
  97. Vanderroost M, Ragaert P, Devlieghere F, Meulenaer BD (2014) Intelligent foodpackaging: The nextgeneration. Trends Food Sci Technol 39:47–62CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  98. Varcode (2014) FreshCode™label. Accessed 14 September 2014
  99. Vermeiren L, Devlieghere F, Van Beest M, de Kruijf N, Debevere J (1999) Developments in the active packaging of foods. Trends Food Sci Tech 10:77–86CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  100. Wessling C, Nielsen T, Leufven A, Jagersstad M (1998) Mobility of α–tocopherol and BHT in LDPE in contact with fatty food stimulants. Food Addit Contam 15:709–715CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  101. Wolfbeis OS, List H (1995) Method for quality control of packaged organic substances and packaging material for use with this method. US Patent 5407829Google Scholar
  102. Yam KL, Takhistov PT, Miltz J (2005) Intelligent packaging: concepts and applications. J Food Sci 70:1–10CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  103. Yebo N, Sree SP, Levrau E, Detavernier C, Hens Z, Martens JA (2012) Selective and reversible ammonia gas detection with nano porous film functionalized silicon photonic micro ring resonator. Opt Express 20:11855–11862CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  104. Yoshida CMP, Maciel VBV, Mendonça MED (2014) Chitosan bio based and intelligent films: Monitoring pH variations. Food Sci Technol-LEB 55:83–89CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  105. Zagory D (1995) Ethylene-removing packaging. In: Rooney ML (ed) Active food packaging. Blackie Academic and Professional, London, UK, pp. 38–54CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Association of Food Scientists & Technologists (India) 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • K. B. Biji
    • 1
  • C. N. Ravishankar
    • 2
  • C. O. Mohan
    • 1
  • T. K. Srinivasa Gopal
    • 1
  1. 1.Fish Processing Division, ICAR-Central Institute of Fisheries TechnologyCIFT Junction, Willingdon Island, MatsyapuriCochinIndia
  2. 2.ICAR-Central Institute of Fisheries TechnologyCIFT Junction, Willingdon Island, MatsyapuriCochinIndia

Personalised recommendations