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Some properties of starch and starch edible films from under-utilized roots and tubers from the Venezuelan Amazons

Tapia M.S., Perez E., Rodriguez P., Guzman R., Ducamp-Collin M.N., Tran T., Rolland-Sabaté A.. 2012. Journal of Cellular Plastics, 48 (6) : p. 526-544.

DOI: 10.1177/0021955X12445291

Biopolymers from agricultural starchy commodities can be raw materials for edible, biologically degradable plastics. They have promising uses, having been proposed for replacing synthetic films. There are several starchy sources not yet quite exploited such as tropical roots and tubers that could be excellent starch sources to produce edible films with distinctive functional properties. The objective of this study was to formulate edible films from six tropical starchy crops. Starches were extracted and purified to 97-99% purity from Ipomoea batatas, Arracacia xanthorriza roots, Colocasia esculenta, Xanthosoma sagittifolium corms, and Dioscorea trifida tubers (white and purple) cultivated in the Venezuelan Amazons. The non-conventional starches were characterized for purity, amylose content and gelatinization profile by differential scanning calorimetry, starch granular morphometry and rheological properties. Starch-based films were processed by casting solutions prepared with each starch, glycerol, and distilled water. Starch suspensions were gelatinized by heat, degassed, poured in plates and dried. In the films, studies performed were water vapor, oxygen and carbon dioxide permeability, and mechanical properties in terms of tensile strength. Crystallinity patterns of native starches and films were also obtained. Ipomoea batatas and Colocasia esculenta exhibited polymorphism A+B type X-ray pattern, Xanthosoma sagittifolium, an A-type X-ray pattern, and Arracacia xanthorriza and both Diosocrea trifida, B-type patterns; while starch-based films had all a B-type X-ray pattern. As expected, the potential for these types of films are more in the area of decreasing gas exchange rather than retardation of water loss due to their hydrophilic nature. Films from these non-conventional starch sources with barrier and mechanical characteristics tailored for specific uses can be of interest as plastics for the food industry and results may be of significance also, for starch-based foams.

Mots-clés : biopolymère; matériau de conditionnement; produit alimentaire; amidon; racine; tubercule; plante amylacée; composition globale; propriété physicochimique; amylose; arracacia xanthorrhiza; colocasia esculenta; xanthosoma sagittifolium; dioscorea trifida; ipomoea batatas; amazonie; venezuela (république bolivarienne du); emballage comestible

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