In this Number:
Environmental Management, Human Resource Management and Green Human Resource Management!
The main purpose of this document is to supplement the literature on human resource management (HRM) and environmental management. Ideas for future research are also provided. As the role of human capital in implementing environmental management is a mature research field, a new topic known as green human resource management has emerged. We review studies that analyse both the relationship between general human resource management and environmental strategy and between green human resource management and environmental strategy.
Sustainable packaging to reduce food waste? Focus on plant-derived polymers and additives.
The promotion of sustainable packaging is part of the European Green Deal. One option is the use of renewable resources and biomass waste as raw materials for the production of polymers. Bio-based polymers have still limited practical use due to lower performance in key packaging functions that directly affect food quality and safety, shelf life and therefore the amount of food waste. In addition to bio-based polymers, this article focuses on plant extracts (herbs, flowers, trees and their fruits) as packaging agents active ingredients that can extend the shelf life of food. Finally, the potential for adoption of packaging based on polymers from renewable sources is discussed from the point of view of the bioeconomy.
Lignin in an elastomer: environment and economy!
From an environmental and economic point of view, it is a win-win strategy to use materials obtained from renewable resources for the production of high-performance elastomer composites. Lignin, being a renewable biomass, was used as a functional filling material to obtain an elastomeric composite with a higher degree of mechanical performance. In the presence of a suitable coupling agent, a high temperature was preferred for reactive mixing of the lignin with polybutadiene rubber (BR). It is quite fascinating that the mechanical performance of this composite is comparable to carbon black filled composites.
The impact of the type of packaging on the flavor of the wine.
Literature review of the most commonly available wine packaging categories: glass bottles, polyethylene terephthalate (PET) bottles, bag-in-box (BIB), aluminum cans, and Tetra Pak. The market share and environmental impacts of each category are discussed. Particular attention is paid to the impact reported on the flavor and aroma of the wine packaged for each type of package. Finally, the potential impacts on consumer preferences are discussed. While glass is still the dominant packaging material in the wine industry and for consumer demand, economic and environmental concerns are driving industry and consumers to study and adopt alternative packaging materials.
Antibacterial paper based on benzalkonium chloride for applications also in food packaging.
Pathogenic bacteria and other microorganisms represent a powerful threat to humans, causing various infectious diseases. To control the spread of the infection, several antibacterial products have been developed. However, most of them are known to be associated with health risks, environmental pollution, complex manufacturing and/or higher costs. To address these issues, a low-cost, biodegradable, human skin compatible antibacterial paper was developed in this study. The developed antibacterial paper is suitable for use in industry for disinfection and food packaging purposes, and also by the public for hand sanitisation.
PFAS review in food contact materials and their migration into food.
Perfluoroalkyl and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) are synthetic chemical compounds widely used in various industries, including food contact materials (FCMs), which provide resistance to grease and moisture and non-stick properties. PFAS enter the food chain directly from the intake of contaminated food or indirectly from the migration of the FCM into the food. Therefore, it is necessary to analyze the content of different FCMs and evaluate the migration from the FCM under normal conditions of use and storage. This literature review demonstrates that several perfluoroalkyl and polyfluoroalkyl compounds are detected in fast food packaging, microwave popcorn bags and pans, among others. In addition, it shows the conditions or factors that favor the migration of PFAS from the FCM to the food.
Review on bioplastics and their adoption in the circular economy.
The European Union is working to achieve the net zero emissions target for 2050 and to tackle the ever-growing environmental and sustainability crisis by implementing the European Green Deal. The transition to a more sustainable society is intertwined with the production, use and disposal of plastic in the European economy. The adoption of biodegradable, bio-based bioplastics-plastics or both is being evaluated as a way to remove society from the use of fossil resources and mitigate specific environmental risks related to plastic waste. In this work, we aim to review the field of bioplastics, including standards and life cycle assessment studies, and discuss some of the challenges that can currently be identified with the adoption of these materials.