Kirubasankar G R1, Midhuna L V1, Dakshayani. R2 and Dr. R. Jagan Mohan3


The term Nano Foods refers to foods being introduced to consumers utilizing nanotechnology tools, processes and contains a mix of nanoparticles in an acceptable range.  The structure and characteristics of matter can be manipulated at the nanometric scale (10-100 nm), which leads to the use of materials in new and interesting research domains where nanotechnology and biology are combined. Nanotechnology allows for the enhancement of food product quality, by modifying the physicochemical properties of nano-sized constituents of food items. It has diverse application in the food sector, including food packaging, storage, and quality monitoring. The major area of applications includes the alteration of food texture, food encapsulation, sensations, taste developments and enhancing the bioavailability of the food nutrients. The most recent nanotechnology applications in producing food include the creation of nano-sized food components, bioactive compound delivery techniques and novel packaging of food.

Nano – Encapsulations

Surface modification of nanoparticles being important for various applications in food processing.The surface often being modified by coating or encapsulation of those nanoparticles. This is found to be applied in the controlled release of genes, drugs, nutraceuticals, and various bioactive agents. This controlled release mechanism protects the particle from immediate degradation, controls the discharge rate, targets the delivery point, and prolongs the active duration of nutraceuticals and other bioactive agents. Microparticle falls with diameter range of 3 to 800 mm, whereas nanoparticles possess diameters of about 0 and 1000 nm (in the colloidal range) and could be framed as nano-capsules or as nano-spheres. Natural bioactive substances are chemically unstable and easily degraded by oxidation, which can compromise the components integrity and contribute for the generation of free radicals. Encapsulation guarantees that the concealed component navigates even in adverse situations to be delivered to the destination. The food manufacturing method aided by nano-capsules has many advantages: it is simple to operate, enhance stability, reduces or prevents oxidation, can maintain highly volatile ingredients, improves flavours, has moisture triggered control release, continuous delivery of several active compounds, pH-triggered controlled release, its sensory properties perception lasts longer and has enhanced bioavailability. The following nanoencapsulation methods are described for antimicrobials and antioxidants: association colloid-based nano-incorporation, lipid-based nanoencapsulation techniques, encapsulation techniques on bio-basis polymeric nanocarriers, cyclodextrin based incorporation, electrospinning, electro spraying, carbon nanotubes and nanocomposite. Freeze-drying or spray drying can be used after a variety of nanoencapsulation processes.


The “Nano biosensor” is one of the greatest instances of technology integration for the benefit of the food industry. It was made feasible by the combination of bioengineering, nanotechnology, and software engineering. Nano-sensors, electronic tongues, and bacteria identification are some of the frequently used applications of nano-biotechnology in monitoring the food quality. An electronic tongue has been developed which is included in food packaging and comprises nano-sensors. These were highly sensitive to gases released during food spoilage and the sensor strip changes colour, signalling the freshness of food products. By tracking food pollutants across the food production chain, nano-sensors may provide quality assurance. The nano-sensors may be used to precisely identify the existence of fugus or insects within bulk storage of grain. Gold, platinum, and palladium are wont to make the gas sensors.


A nano-emulsion is a kinetically stabilized dispersion of two or more insoluble fluids having droplet diameters of 50 to 1000 nm. nano-emulsion are ultrafine oil-in-water emulsions with droplet sizes of 50 to 200 nanometres. They do not scatter visible light and are thus transparent; also, because of their tiny particle size, these nano-emulsion stay stable for long periods. nano-emulsion can be used in the manufacture of food items such as sweeteners, flavoured oils, salad dressing drinks, and other processed foods. The procedure involves the emergence of various tastes together with various stimuli such as heat, pH, ultrasonic waves, and many more. They effectively preserve the properties and safeguard them against enzymatic reactions and degradation. nano-emulsion have numerous benefits over traditional emulsions, including the fact that they are more heat-stable and have a smaller size. Nano-emulsion can interact with a wide range of biological substances such as enzymes in the gastrointestinal tract (GIT). Nano-emulsion have been utilized to decontaminate materials used in food packaging on tributyl phosphate, soybean, or non-ionic surfactants have been utilized to inhibit the growth of microorganisms, therefore decreasing food deterioration.

Risk Assessment Of Nanotechnology And Impact Of Nanoparticles On Human Health

Sometimes nanotechnology can be used to produce packages with better mechanical and thermal properties, and nano-sensors can be integrated into packaging systems to notify customers when a food product is considered as unhealthy to ingest. There have only been a few research that studied nanostructured materials in the intestinal system, and the outcomes of the study revealed that these nanoparticles travel through the human intestines and are swiftly excreted the public view, nanotechnology packaging is regarded as less troublesome. Consumers may be more willing to adopt packaging improvements than food innovations. The two aspects that most influence individual perceptions of nanotechnology utilized in food have been classified into Nano-outside (For example packaging) and Nano-inside (For example food). The nanoparticle may readily penetrate the gut wall, increasing bioavailability and absorption and resulting in greater plasma concentrations. Nanoparticles cannot remain in free form in the gut but it aggregates or agglomerate. This may also prove harmful to the physiology of the human body. According to the findings of certain research, nanotechnology packaging is thought to be more helpful and poses less of a health danger than nanotechnology foods. Till now, the researchers are mainly inclined to the inhalation exposure of the nanomaterials. These research works have led to the fact that the nanoparticles may cross the cellular barriers and the liabilities to these nanoparticles leads to an exaggerated population of free radicals and hence the increased oxidative damage to the cell. Nanotechnology might potentially be utilized to create healthier foods. In contrast to the substantiate benefits and imminent applications of engineered nanotechnology materials (ENMs), there is a lack of information on the possible (eco) toxicological impact of nanoparticles. It is one of the factors why there are so many worries about the effects of nanoparticle on environmental and human health. When considering the risk of nanoparticle exposure, several variables should be considered, including size and shape, bioactivity and crystal structures and purity. Nanoparticles produced from engineered or other nanomaterials can go into the body by breathing, digestion, or skin entry. Nanotechnology-based medical devices, as well as medication injection and implant release, maybe another avenue for nanoparticles. In the food sector, respiration and skin penetration are virtually solely associated with workers in nanomaterials manufacturing plants, while the major source of worry for end consumers is ingestion. The liver and spleen are the two primary organs for nanoparticle dispersion following intake and passage from the intestines to circulation. In contrast to eating as a route of nanoparticle entrance, breathing and skin exposure have received greater attention. The study was performed using SiO2 nanoparticles, which is generally used as a food additive and also in food packaging. It may lead to similar effects in vivo as previously reported. The impact of nanoparticles on circulation has not been well studied, although preliminary findings suggest that these nanoparticles may hurt the bloodstream, particularly microcirculation.


Nanotechnology is a diversifying field has huge potential to improve food quality, creating innovative food, can do wonder in storage option of food packaging, provideheathy as well as nutritious food. However, the nanotechnology application in food being in basic stage of research and most applications targets high end value products in a short span, though the success of applying nanotechnology in food is limited. It could be utilized possibly to improvise the taste and texture of food, also to deduce fat content, encapsulate nutrients for target delivery areas and also to improve the shelf life of the product. Smart packaging of foods with integrated nano-sensors helps the consumer to get information about the packed food without opening by indicators for quality monitoring. The food processing industry needs to gain consumer trust and acceptance of nanofood. Regulators namely the FDA need to issue guidelines related to the standards which has to be followed when assessing the use of nanomaterials with new properties in food safety, food packaging, and the utility of dietary supplements. It’s vital tonote that nanofoods are laboratory-born and cannot be compared to traditional nanofoods. There is insufficient scientific research as well as benefits on current nano systems. Therefore, difficult arises to generalize that nanotechnology being a boon or bane. It is desirable to force testing nano-modified foods before putting them on the market. To assess the potential risk of human exposure to nanoparticles, new approaches and standardization of testing procedures are immediate requirements to examine the effects of nanoparticles on living things.

1 III Year B. Tech, Food Technology, National Institute of Food Technology, Entrepreneurship and Management, Thanjavur.

2 Research Scholar, Food Science and Technology, National Institute of Food Technology, Entrepreneurship and Management, Thanjavur.

3 Professor and Head, Department of Food Product Department, National Institute of Food Technology, Entrepreneurship and Management, Thanjavur.