Antimicrobial activity of coriander oil and its effectiveness as food preservative

Crit Rev Food Sci Nutr. 2017 Jan 2;57(1):35-47. doi: 10.1080/10408398.2013.847818.


ABTRACT Foodborne illness represents a major economic burden worldwide and a serious public health threat, with around 48 million people affected and 3,000 death each year only in the USA. One of the possible strategies to reduce foodborne infections is the development of effective preservation strategies capable of eradicating microbial contamination of foods. Over the last years, new challenges for the food industry have arisen such as the increase of antimicrobial resistance of foodborne pathogens to common preservatives and consumers demand for naturally based products. In order to overcome this, new approaches using natural or bio-based products as food preservatives need to be investigated. Coriander (Coriandrum sativum L.) is a well-known herb widely used as spice, or in folk medicine, and in the pharmacy and food industries. Coriander seed oil is the world's second most relevant essential oil, exhibiting antimicrobial activity against Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria, some yeasts, dermatophytes and filamentous fungi. This review highlights coriander oil antimicrobial activity and possible mechanisms of action in microbial cells and discusses the ability of coriander oil usage as a food preservative, pointing out possible paths for the successful evolution for these strategies towards a successful development of a food preservation strategy using coriander oil.

Keywords: Coriandrum sativum L.; Foodborne disease; food preservation; natural antimicrobials.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Acyclic Monoterpenes
  • Animals
  • Anti-Infective Agents / adverse effects
  • Anti-Infective Agents / chemistry*
  • Anti-Infective Agents / metabolism
  • Consumer Behavior
  • Coriandrum / chemistry*
  • Coriandrum / growth & development
  • Coriandrum / metabolism
  • Food Contamination / prevention & control
  • Food Preservation
  • Food Preservatives / adverse effects
  • Food Preservatives / chemistry*
  • Food Preservatives / metabolism
  • Food Technology / trends
  • Foodborne Diseases / prevention & control
  • Fungi / growth & development
  • Fungi / metabolism
  • Gram-Negative Bacteria / growth & development
  • Gram-Negative Bacteria / metabolism
  • Gram-Positive Bacteria / growth & development
  • Gram-Positive Bacteria / metabolism
  • Humans
  • Models, Biological*
  • Monoterpenes / adverse effects
  • Monoterpenes / chemistry
  • Monoterpenes / metabolism
  • Oils, Volatile / adverse effects
  • Oils, Volatile / chemistry*
  • Oils, Volatile / metabolism
  • Plant Oils / adverse effects
  • Plant Oils / chemistry*
  • Plant Oils / metabolism
  • Seeds / chemistry*
  • Seeds / growth & development
  • Seeds / metabolism


  • Acyclic Monoterpenes
  • Anti-Infective Agents
  • Food Preservatives
  • Monoterpenes
  • Oils, Volatile
  • Plant Oils
  • coriander oil
  • linalool