In recent years, biodegradable films produced by starch have gained importance due to the interest on environmental sustainability. The starch modification is conducted to enhance the native starch characteristics, which are presented on their native form. Chemical modifications are the most used method on industrial scale. However, in the process, large amounts of waste water are produced, containing high concentration of salts, and possibly affecting negatively the environment. On the other hand, the oxidation by ozone is considered as a safer starch modification method for both consumers and the environment. This technology is not well explored yet, and few studies of starch modification by ozone are related in the literature. In fact, in Brazil, starch modification by ozone began to be studied recently; and any study for the application of this modified material is related so far. This project intends to study the production and characterization of biodegradable films produced with cassava starch modified by the ozone technology, as a potential for food packaging. Modification and characterization of modified cassava starch (structure and properties) will be carried out at the Laboratory of Process Engineering of the Luiz de Queiroz College of Agriculture (ESALQ/USP). Films will be produced and evaluated in terms of mechanical, thermal, barrier properties and morphology, with the collaboration of Prof. Dr. Carmen Cecilia Tadini, from the Food Engineering Laboratory (LEA) of the Food Research Center (FoRC) of the University of São Paulo (USP). This work is part of the research project CNPq PVE 401004/2014-7.
News published in Agência FAPESP Newsletter about the scholarship: