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Research article2023Peer reviewedOpen access

The effect of pine cone lignin on mechanical, thermal and barrier properties of faba bean protein films for packaging applications

Rojas-Lema, Sandra; Nilsson, Klara; Langton, Maud; Trifol, Jon; Gomez-Caturla, Jaume; Balart, Rafael; Garcia-Garcia, Daniel; Moriana, Rosana


In the present work, faba bean protein (FBP) films plasticized with glycerol and reinforced with different amounts (2.5, 5.0, 7.5 and 10% by weight of FBP) of lignin extracted from pine cones (PL) have been obtained by solution casting. The results obtained showed an elongation at break of 111.7% with the addition of 5% PL to the FBP film, which represents an increase of 107% compared to the FBP control film. On the other hand, it was observed by thermogravimetric analysis (TGA) that the incorporation of lignin improved the thermal stability of the FBP film, leading to an increase in the protein degradation temperature, being this increase higher in the sample film reinforced with 10% PL. The barrier properties of the FBP films were also affected by the presence of lignin, leading to a decrease in water vapor permeability (WVP) in comparison to the unreinforced film. The results show that the sample reinforced with 2.5% PL had the lowest WVP value, with a reduction of 25% compared to the control film. Chemical analysis by Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR) confirmed the formation of intramolecular interactions between lignin and proteins which, together with the inherent hydro-phobicity of lignin, resulted in a decrease of the moisture content in the films reinforced with PL. This research work has allowed the development of biobased and biodegradable films with attractive properties that could be of potential use in sectors such as packaging.


Proteins films; Faba bean; Pine cone; Lignin; Packaging

Published in

Journal of Food Engineering
2023, Volume: 339, article number: 111282