REPID – Insect Repellent Packaging with Detector

    Project Code: 296
    A new type of packaging with synergism between natural insect repellent and leakage detector in the system. It combines insect repellent, status of protection indicator. The leakage indicator system consists of colorimetric dyes which is reactive towards oxygen. The indicator is able to detect oxygen molecules at a minimum concentration as low as 0.1% to show color changes. These dyes is positioned within a sealed package and immediately transformed to colored state if there is any oxygen.
    By Universiti Teknologi Malaysia
Project Overview

This innovation emphasized the efficiency of natural non-toxic insect repellents such as essential oils (EO) embedded in food packaging to facilitate acceptance by consumers. Among the EOs known for their pest control activity including neem, citronella, cinnamon and eucalyptus. Most plants contain active compounds that they use in preventing insect attack such as monoterpenes, sesquiterpenes, and phenolic compounds.

Despite the potential repellency of EOs, uncontrolled evaporation of active compounds induces an early peak of high repellent efficiency, followed by a rapid decay before it could reach certain required time. Pest control formulation should minimize the loss of active ingredients at accelerated rate to non-targeted sites. Therefore, the main advantage of controlled release formulations, is that they provide solid support for the active ingredients to remain in vicinity of the applied sites. Nanocarrier that protects the EO and convey it at controlled period could greatly reduce the amount of insect repellent compounds applied to the packaging materials and further facilitate release in small delayed portions into the right target/insects.

 

Surface modification is applied within layers of packaging to control the level of efficiency. Burst/rapid release of insect repellent would be targeted for quick response for product protection at point of sale. Whereby sustained release of insect repellent with optimized concentration for longer protection in avoiding insect attack/attraction to packed food at earlier level, which will reduce complexity of control. The active packaging systems can be widely applied on different types of packaging (paper, plastic, carton) and protection needed (long storage, on farm, perishable goods at point of sale)

 

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