Nanotechnology applications for food and health food sectors have undoubtedly opened up enormous opportunities for
innovation and new developments. A cursory look at the development of nanotechnologies offers food nanostructures and
nanofood ingredients, additives and supplements. Natural food constituents such as proteins and polysaccharides that generate
structure and texture in food products are examples of naturally occurring nanosubstances. The processing of raw materials and
ingredients into foods involves the breakdown and re-assembly of natural nanostructures. Nanoscience enables conventional and
acceptable methods to be used for the selection and processing of naturally occurring nanostructures to optimize food quality.
The nanostructures resulting from such processes, need to be clearly distinguished from the insoluble or indigestible ENP�s
(Engineered Nano Particles) that may be added to food products to achieve a certain taste, texture or functionality. Currently,
Nanotechnology is widely focused on food packaging applications which makes up the largest share of nanofood market. A
number of possibilities can be seen in the improvement of packaging material properties in the form of nanocomposites or
nanocoatings, both for conventional plastic materials and biodegradable polymers. Low levels of nano-fillers have been used to
increase the mechanical and gas and light barrier properties of food packaging materials. Nanotechnologies can also add other
intelligent features to food packaging, in terms of monitoring the product quality through integrated sensors and indicators as
well as establishing the authenticity of the products. The present work reviews existing literature on nanotechnology applications
in food sector mainly focusing nanofood packaging, nanofood structures and nanofood ingredients and additives.
J.Premkumar is pursuing his doctoral degree in the Department of Food Processing and Engineering in Karunya University, Coimbatore. Currently, he is doing research in the area of nutraceuticals under the guidance of Dr.T.V.Ranganathan in the same university. He carried his M.Tech project at CIPHET, Ludhiana, Punjab.
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