Box 62 Application briefs from the Journal of Food Science

Better rice formulated with vitamin A

A process for enhancing the content of rice with retinyl palmitate, a particularly effective vitamin A precursor, was studied by researchers at the Department of Food Science and Technology at the University of Georgia. The process was donated in 1997 to the Program for Appropriate Technology in Health by the Coxes of Washington State, who owned the patent. Broken rice is milled into rice flour, combined with a binder and retinyl palmitate and other fortificants, and reformed into rice grains with the same texture as whole rice grains. These are blended with conventional long grained rice at a ratio of 99 : 1. The present study showed that the retinyl palmitate was quite stable under various cooking procedures. When stored at 23°C for 6 months, 85% of the retinyl palmitate was retained, but at 35°C there were extensive losses, 50% after 24 weeks. Under tropical conditions, this means either the use of controlled temperature storage or rapid turnover or increased levels of fortification to compensate for the loss.

Reconfiguring the fatty acid profiles of dairy foods

In 1970's it was found that by feeding cows a source of high oleic fatty acids, milk with higher levels of oleic acid can be produced. High oleic sunflower oil and canola grain are now available as cattle feed additives and make possible the commercial production of milk with higher levels of oleic acid. Researchers from the Universities of Florida and Virginia Tech have studied cheese making with this milk. By consuming calcium salts of high oleic sunflower oil containing 86% oleic acid, test animals produced milk in which the high oleic fatty acids in the milkfat increased from 26% to over 40%. Latin American white cheese (queso blanco) was made from the milk, and tested for firmness and for sensory differences from conventional cheese made by the same method. No differences were found in firmness, sensory testing showed no significant differences between the cheeses. Latin American white cheeses made with high oleic milk were similar to traditional cheeses.

Source: Reprinted from Journal of Food Science 65(5): iv, v. © Institute of Food Technologists, Chicago, Illinois, USA, 2000.

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