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Definition and Functionality of Food Emulsifier


Emulsifier is a surfactant which has the polar (hydrophilic) group and the non-polar (lipophilic) group at the same time. The use of emulsifier could improve the surface tension between two or more components therefore to form a uniform and stable dispersion system. Emulsifier is also called as stabilizer and surface active agent. It is very important to many industries in the world.

 

In food products, food emulsifier plays important roles in lots of function areas. It is effective for improving the texture, mouth feelings, appearance and the shelf life of the food products, and therefore to improve the whole food product quality.

 

The main functions of the food emulsifiers are:

 

Functions

Food Examples

Stabilization (W/O or O/W)

Margarine, salad dressing

Emulsification

Coffee whiteners

Aeration

Cakes, whipped toppings, icings

Dispersion

Fillings, confectionery

Fat crystal modification

Coatings

Anti-staling

Yeast raised baked goods

Starch complexing

Breads, dried potatoes, pasta

Dough strengthener

Breads, rolls

Dough conditioner

Breads, rolls

Texture control

Cakes, breads

Fat separation control

Peanut butter

Fat agglomeration control

Ice cream, whipped toppings

Clouding agent

Beverages

Antispattering

Margarine

Antisticking

Confectionery

Wetting agent

Coffee whiteners

Viscosity control

Chocolates

Freeze-thaw stabilization

Whipped toppings, coffee whiteners

Volume control

Breads, cakes

Defoamer

Yeast, sugar

Shelf life extension

Sausages, baked goods

 

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