Fruit Waste Valorization for Biodegradable Biocomposite Applications: A Review

Alison C. Gowman, Maisyn C. Picard, Loong-Tak Lim, Manjusri Misra, Amar K. Mohanty

Abstract


Currently, food waste is a major concern for companies, governments, and consumers. One of the largest sources of food waste occurs during industrial processing, where substantial by-products are generated. Fruit processing creates a lot of these by-products, from undesirable or “ugly fruit,” to the skins, seeds, and fleshy parts of the fruits. These by-products compose up to 30% of the initial mass of fruit processed. Millions of tons of fruit wastes are generated globally from spoilage and industrial by-products, so it is essential to find alternative uses for fruit wastes to increase their value. This goal can be accomplished by processing fruit waste into fillers and incorporating them into polymeric materials. This review summarizes recent developments in technologies to incorporate fruit wastes from sources such as grape, apple, olive, banana, coconut, pineapple, and others into polymer matrices to create green composites or films. Various surface treatments of biofillers/fibers are also discussed; these treatments increase the adhesion and applicability of the fillers with various bioplastics. Lastly, a comprehensive review of sustainable and biodegradable biocomposites is presented.

Keywords


Fruit waste; Biodegradable; Biobased plastics; Biocomposites

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