Background. Recently, numerous studies on packaging nanomaterials for foods underline the significant function of nanofillers in the manufacturing of innovative nanocomposites based on polymer or biopolymer matrices. It is evident in the literature that nanofillers exhibit effective characteristics such as antimicrobial potential, barrier, mechanical,
and thermal properties. However, the exact mechanisms regulating the occurrence of the antimicrobial activity of nanofillers are only hypothesized, the literature containing controversies on the mechanisms of nanofiller-induced toxicity.
Objective and approach. The objective of this review is to highlight several types of nanofillers, especially inorganic nanofillers that can be used along different polymers or biopolymers to form innovative food packaging materials. The antimicrobial potential of metal-based nanofillers is also discussed in the second part of the review.
Key findings and conclusions. Even though numerous reports on polymer or biopolymer nanomaterial applications in
food packaging are available, their purpose is not aimed at in this article, and a smaller number of reviews approaches
food packaging nanomaterials in this way. It is expected that the information contained in this paper will complement previous reports, and open new vistas for explorers to apply nanofillers in the functional food packaging area.