New research finds that cinnamon-based active packaging is a viable alternative to modified atmosphere packaging that can extend gluten-free bread's shelf life on both a microbiological and sensory basis.

Cinnamon-based active packaging is a suitable alternative to modified atmosphere packaging (MAP) for gluten-free bread on both a microbiological and sensory basis, according to new research.

The data, funded by the Spanish government and published inPackaging Technology and Science, compared the efficiency of three types of packaging: Active packaging; MAP; and combinations of the two for packaged food life extension.

MAP gave greater microbiological inhibition and consequently longer shelf life than traditional packaging, with only microbiological results taken into account, the researchers found.

Gluten-free sliced bread has high added value, but also has a short shelf life. The scientists said many attempts have been made to increase gluten-free bread’s shelf life and to achieve a product with high sensory quality. But they noted sensory properties, including flavor, taste and mastication were better without MAP in the presence of the active packaging containing the essential oil cinnamon.

The active packaging comprised a self-adhesive label placed inside a polyethylene wrap. Concentrations of cinnamon EO were incorporated in the packaging and a mixture of 60% CO2 and 40% N2 were used as the modified atmosphere, the Spanish team reported.

Among their findings, the authors concluded that MAP changes the perception of characteristic flavor. They found differences between the two active prototypes, and that the active packaging with 0.0374g EO provided better protection, which could be attributed to the higher concentration of active compounds, they indicated.

Source:,Packaging Technology and Science