PACKAGING: Seaweed Barrier Coatings.

30. October 2022 | Material | via


Flinders University researchers Peng Su, left, Chanaka Mudugamuwa and Dr Zhongfan Jia testing the biopolymer coating for potential use in fast-food and other wrappers. (Credit:

Flinders University materials researchers and German biomaterials developer one • fıve teamed up to develop biopolymer coating materials derived from seaweed extract in order to replace petroleum-based plastic coatings used in grease-resistant fast-food packaging production. Grease-resistant paper is typically coated with plastic and other environmentally harmful chemicals, such as polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFASs). Their newly developed prototype coating however meets the functional requirements of conventional grease-resistant packaging materials while also presenting an environmentally circular solution. “The seaweed extracts have a similar structure to the natural fibres from which paper is made,” says Dr Jia. “Our novel specialist treatments boost the grease-resistance feature of the seaweed via simple modifications while not affecting biodegradability nor recyclability of the coated paper.” These extracts are transformed through a proprietary processing methodology to produce functional biopolymer sheets that can be cut or coated onto various surfaces, depending on the application. Flinders University and one • fıve are now working towards transferring laboratory-scale processing to produce industrially-relevant volumes of the natural polymer coating.

Flinders University bioplastics from beachcast seaweed – Niki Sperou and Peng Su – at the Centre for Marine Bioproducts Development. (Credit: