Efficacy of cold plasma technology on the constituents of plant-based food products: Principles, current applications, and future potentials

Oner M. E., Gultekin Subasi B., Özkan G., Esatbeyoglu T., Çapanoğlu Güven E.

Food Research International, vol.172, 2023 (SCI-Expanded) identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Review
  • Volume: 172
  • Publication Date: 2023
  • Doi Number: 10.1016/j.foodres.2023.113079
  • Journal Name: Food Research International
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus, Academic Search Premier, PASCAL, BIOSIS, Biotechnology Research Abstracts, CAB Abstracts, Compendex, EMBASE, Food Science & Technology Abstracts, MEDLINE, Veterinary Science Database, DIALNET
  • Keywords: Allergen, Carbohydrate, Lipid, Non-thermal, Protein, Secondary plant metabolite, Sensory, Sustainability
  • Istanbul Technical University Affiliated: Yes


Cold plasma (CP) is one of the novel non-thermal food processing technologies, which has the potential to extend the shelf-life of plant-based food products without adversely affecting the nutritional value and sensory characteristics. Besides microbial inactivation, this technology has been explored for food functionality, pesticide control, and allergen removals. Cold plasma technology presents positive results in applications related to food processing at a laboratory scale. This review discusses applications of CP technology and its effect on the constituents of plant-based food products including proteins, lipids, carbohydrates, and polar and non-polar secondary plant metabolites. As proven by the publications in the food field, the influence of CP on the food constituents and sensory quality of various food materials are mainly based on CP-related factors such as processing time, voltage level, power, frequency, type of gas, gas flow rate as well as the amount of sample, type, and content of food constituents. In addition to these, changes in the secondary plant metabolites depend on the action of CP on both cell membrane breakdown and increase/decrease in the scavenging compounds. This technology offers a good alternative to conventional methods by inactivating enzymes and increasing antioxidant levels. With a waterless and chemical-free property, this sustainable and energy-efficient technology presents several advantages in food applications. However, scaling up CP by ensuring uniform plasma treatment is a major challenge. Further investigation is required to provide information regarding the toxicity of plasma-treated food products.