Corporate Banner
Satellite Banner
Food & Beverage Analysis
Scientific Community
 
Become a Member | Sign in
Home>News>This Article
  News
Return

Imaging Fat Crystals in Chocolate

Published: Tuesday, October 09, 2012
Last Updated: Tuesday, October 09, 2012
Bookmark and Share
Scientists from Loughborough and Nottingham Universities have used the Linkam Linksys32-DV software to visualise and measure the in-situ growth of fat crystals on the surface of chocolate.

Reformulation is a common area of study for food scientists, as worldwide, many universities and private organisations are investing heavily in research to create healthier versions of popular foods. Reformulation is the process of adding or taking away ingredients from an established recipe. This is challenging as many of the chemical processes that occur within the foods are unknown and changing a specific constituent can have consequences on health and safety, cooking, storage and on manufacturing processes. 

Chocolate is a target for reformulation as it has a very high fat content (the fat constituent can be up to 40% in a basic dark chocolate). Manufacturers are keen to reduce this percentage and create a lower calorie version. The structure of standard chocolate is a crystalline structure of sugar and cocoa solids within a fat matrix. Chocolate contains different fats and these can solidify to form different polymorphs. These polymorphs each have different physical characteristics such as melting point. One polymorph, the form βv is preferred as this has a melting point above room temperature, but low enough to melt in the mouth, enough tensile strength to give a satisfying snap, an attractive gloss and a long shelf life. 

The high fat content of chocolate influences its taste and its consistency. The traditional method of creating the preferential polymorph is called 'tempering' where crystals are grown via nucleation within the chocolate mass, or by the addition of seed crystals. Current industrial processes involve a shear being applied to the liquid chocolate during cooling and crystallisation. Viscosity is very important as reducing the fat content can cause increase the viscosity of the mix and create processing issues. One possible solution is to add Limonene, an essential oil, commonly used as a citrus food flavouring. This oil mixes with the cocoa butter triglycerides lowering the fat content and the viscosity of the liquid chocolate. 

Scientists from the Division of Food Sciences at Nottingham University, and the Chemical Engineering department at Loughborough University, have looked at the growth of fat crystals within chocolate using the Linkam Linksys32-DV software. 

Joydeep Ray, a scientist from Loughborough University commented they often used a THMS600 temperature controlled stage and the Linksys32-DV software to "study confectionery fat crystallization kinetics, such as cocoa butter and cocoa butter equivalents" 

A Pixelink camera and Linksys32-DV software was used to photograph two sets of chocolate samples. One set of samples was mixed with limonene. These samples were stored at 20°C and observed over a period of four weeks for microstructure changes and differences between the two mixes. After 1 day (0 weeks), distinct (~800-1000µm) feather shaped spherulites could be observed in the chocolate with the limonene.


Further Information

Join For Free

Access to this exclusive content is for Technology Networks Premium members only.

Join Technology Networks Premium for free access to:

  • Exclusive articles
  • Presentations from international conferences
  • Over 3,000+ scientific posters on ePosters
  • More than 4,500+ scientific videos on LabTube
  • 35 community eNewsletters


Sign In



Forgotten your details? Click Here
If you are not a member you can join here

*Please note: By logging into TechnologyNetworks.com you agree to accept the use of cookies. To find out more about the cookies we use and how to delete them, see our privacy policy.


Scientific News
Detecting Fake Parmesan Cheeses
Scientists report on a way to catch adulteration of the regional artisanal products.
Cancer-Fighting Properties Of Horseradish Revealed
Horseradish contains cancer-fighting compounds known as glucosinolates. Glucosinolate type and quantity vary depending on size and quality of the horseradish root. For the first time, the activation of cancer-fighting enzymes by glucosinolate products in horseradish has been documented.
Process Analysis in Real Time
With a real-time mass spectrometer developed by Fraunhofer researchers, it has become possible for the first time to analyze up to 30 components simultaneously from the gas phase and a liquid, including in-situ analysis.
An E.coli Detector May be in Your Hands Soon
Hand-held device that can be used to detect a variety of pathogens—including foodborne pathogens like E. coli—at all stages in the food supply chain, from fields to restaurants may be available soon.
Three Quarters of the Population Believe That Food in Germany is Safe
According to the latest survey results, consumers rate climate change and / or environmental pollution as the most significant risks to health.
Why do Tomatoes Smell "Grassy"?
Researchers identify enzymes that convert the grassy smell of tomatoes into a sweeter scent.
Compounds Found in Fruits Could Treat Diseases
Fruit discovery could provide new treatments for obesity, type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease.
Sticky Molecules to Tackle Obesity and Diabetes
Researchers at Okayama University have reported that the overexpression of an adhesion molecule found on the surface of fat cells appears to protect mice from developing obesity and diabetes.
Process Contaminants in Vegetable Oils and Foods
Glycerol-based process contaminants found in palm oil, but also in other vegetable oils, margarines and some processed foods, raise potential health concerns for average consumers of these foods in all young age groups, and for high consumers in all age groups.
Apricot Kernels Pose Risk of Cyanide Poisoning
Eating more than three small raw apricot kernels, or less than half of one large kernel, in a serving can exceed safe levels. Toddlers consuming even one small apricot kernel risk being over the safe level.
SELECTBIO

Skyscraper Banner
Go to LabTube
Go to eposters
 
Access to the latest scientific news
Exclusive articles
Upload and share your posters on ePosters
Latest presentations and webinars
View a library of 1,800+ scientific and medical posters
3,000+ scientific and medical posters
A library of 2,500+ scientific videos on LabTube
4,500+ scientific videos
Close
Premium CrownJOIN TECHNOLOGY NETWORKS PREMIUM FOR FREE!