Recent developments in antimicrobial and antifouling coatings to reduce or prevent contamination and cross-contamination of food contact surfaces by bacteria. Academic Article uri icon


  • Illness as the result of ingesting bacterially contaminated foodstuffs represents a significant annual loss of human quality of life and economic impact globally. Significant research investment has recently been made in developing new materials that can be used to construct food contacting tools and surfaces that might minimize the risk of cross-contamination of bacteria from one food item to another. This is done to mitigate the spread of bacterial contamination and resultant foodborne illness. Internet-based literature search tools such as Web of Science, Google Scholar, and Scopus were utilized to investigate publishing trends within the last 10 years related to the development of antimicrobial and antifouling surfaces with potential use in food processing applications. Technologies investigated were categorized into four major groups: antimicrobial agent-releasing coatings, contact-based antimicrobial coatings, superhydrophobic antifouling coatings, and repulsion-based antifouling coatings. The advantages for each group and technical challenges remaining before wide-scale implementation were compared. A diverse array of emerging antimicrobial and antifouling technologies were identified, designed to suit a wide range of food contact applications. Although each poses distinct and promising advantages, significant further research investment will likely be required to reliably produce effective materials economically and safely enough to equip large-scale operations such as farms, food processing facilities, and kitchens.

published proceedings

  • Compr Rev Food Sci Food Saf

altmetric score

  • 2.5

author list (cited authors)

  • DeFlorio, W., Liu, S., White, A. R., Taylor, T. M., Cisneros-Zevallos, L., Min, Y., & Scholar, E.

citation count

  • 13

complete list of authors

  • DeFlorio, William||Liu, Shuhao||White, Andrew R||Taylor, Thomas Matthew||Cisneros-Zevallos, Luis||Min, Younjin||Scholar, Ethan MA

publication date

  • May 2021