Green Extraction Techniques in Food Analysis

Application of Enzyme-Assisted Extraction for Food Analysis and Release of Natural Products

Author(s): María del Prado García Aparicio* and María Luisa Marina

Pp: 431-496 (66)

DOI: 10.2174/9789815049459123030013


The transition to a circular bioeconomic model that incorporates sustainable extraction processes such as enzyme-assisted extraction (EAE) is motivated by climate change, population growth, and changing diets to address food security and safety, and preserve natural resources (land, and water) and biodiversity. EAE can be applied to extract nutrients and bioactive molecules for food analysis and profiling, and for industrial exploitation of bioactive compounds from novel feedstocks. Commercial extraction processes require high recovery of the targeted compounds and must guarantee the preservation of the biological activity of the products, which is difficult to achieve using conventional methods. EAE is a possible alternative to preserve the quality of final products while reducing the industrial footprint in the food sector at a larger scale. This chapter describes the parameters that impact the extraction yield obtained in the EAE process and provides recent examples of its successful application for the extraction of polymers and bioactive compounds of very diverse matrices (plant, animal, mushrooms, yeast, food waste, and insects), with emphasis on process conditions. This chapter also identifies the challenges and opportunities of EAE and the emerging areas of research to facilitate the economic feasibility of the enzymatic extraction of bioactive molecules. Costs related to enzyme production and its use are one of the main impediments to the industrial application of the EAE process. Recent research progress suggests that reduction of EAE costs can be achieved by a holistic approach considering all steps: enzyme production (by using cheap enzyme production media, in-house enzyme production), selection of feedstock (i.e., food byproducts), enzyme recycling (enzyme immobilization, nano-biocatalysts), the search of novel enzymes (marine degrading polysaccharides), more robust enzymes (i.e., extremozymes) and/or enzyme improvement (bioengineering), and EAE process optimization (minimum optimal enzyme dosage). EAE technology for food analysis and production of bioactive molecules keeps building momentum as it is sustainable, environmentally friendly, and innovative

Keywords: Bioactive compounds, Biorefinery, Biocatalysis, Environmentally friendly enzyme technology, Enzyme-assisted extraction, Sustainable natural sources.

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