Tuesday, 7 January 2020

Benefits Of PH In Food Quality And Production

benefits Of PH In Food Quality And Production

A definition of pH is the measurement of the acidity or alkalinity of a solution commonly measured on a scale of 0 to 14. pH 7 is considered neutral, with lower pH values being acidic and higher values being alkaline or caustic. pH is the most common of all analytical measurements in industrial processing and since it is a direct measure of acid content [H+], it clearly plays an important role in food processing. Among the reasons for measuring pH in food processing include:
•To produce products with consistent well defined properties
•To efficiently produce products at optimal cost
•To avoid causing health problems to consumers
•To meet regulatory requirements
Due to the logarithmic nature of the measurement, even small changes in pH are significant. The difference between pH 6 and pH 5 represents a ten-fold increase in acid concentration; a change of just 0.3 represents a doubling of acid concentration. Variations of pH can impact flavor, consistency, and shelf-life.
Regulatory bodies such as the departments of health often impose a certain value for the pH of the sanitation solution to be used. For example, the pH should be between 8 and 10 based on the chlorine concentration. Similarly, an iodine solution is meant to have a pH value of 5 or lower.
Milk and Dairy Products: pH of milk is around 6.8 and it is tested for impurities and signs of infection upon collection as well as at point of delivery. In processes such as sterilization, pH is checked since a lower value helps to speed up the process. However, lower pH levels can indicate that the cattle carried leukocyte infections such as mamites.
Milk used for cheese manufacturing must be of excellent quality and its pH value contributes to whether the cheese will be soft or hard. pH is also checked during cheese preparation, souring of milk and cream maturation. Pathogen multiplication of the fresh and soft variety, is slowed down considerably by ensuring that the pH stays in the 4.1 to 5.3 region.
Controlling the pH value is very important in butter manufacturing processes. For example, cream is cooled after pasteurization at a very strict pH value of 6.70 to 6.85 to generate sweet butter. In order to manufacture sour butter, citric acid extracts are added to acidify the cream to 4.6-5.0 pH. With butter having a high diacetyl content, a starter is added to bring the pH value to around 5. As with other products, a lower pH value enhances the shelf life of the product.
With yogurt production, the cooling of cultured milk can start only once acidification has reached a pH value of 4.4 to 4.6. As for fruity yogurts, the pH value of the added fruit must be the same as the yogurt itself to avoid undesirable reaction at the end of the cycle. The finished product should ideally have a pH of 4.0 to 4.4 for longer conservation.
Even small changes in the pH value of spring or well waters can indicate a possible fouling of the natural strata. Where municipal water is used, it is often pretreated and its pH monitored. In making fruit juices, the pH of sugar extracts as well as those of juices during purification and refining are checked.
pH plays a crucial role in the production of beer. For example the pH value of crushed malt is around 5.8 whereas its ideal value for protein decomposition is around 5.5. To ensure a consistent quality, the pH of brewed beer prior and after bottling is regularly monitored.
pH of wine normally ranges from 2.8 to 3.8 with the pH influencing various stages of the process including fermentation and conservation. With the pH exceeding 3.5, certain bacteria can attack the wine. However, taste of wine also depends largely on its pH value with acidic wines becoming dry.
pH can be used as an indicator for meat quality ranging from 5.4 to 7.0, can also provide an indication of whether fresh meat was properly stored as varies in different parts of the animal based on the muscular mass, for example, the loin has a lower pH value. Too high a pH value induces a loss of aroma and a visibly darker meat resulting in a lower market value. In addition to meat, ingredients used in the production of ham and sausages are often refrigerated. By simply checking the pH at the liquefier’s intake and drainage points, one can determine if any ammonia has leaked out.
Polluted water can pass on toxins, even fatal ones, to shellfish. The fact that shellfish such as oysters are often consumed raw poses a greater health hazard. As a result, farmed or natural shell fish is detoxified with several wash cycles. The pH of the wash water is an excellent indication whether the process has been properly completed.
A pH value of 4.0 to 5.8 is recommended for baked bread in order to prolong its shelf life. Batter has to be acidified to a pH of 4.1 or less to ensure that pathogens are not multiplied. Otherwise it must be kept at temperatures below 5°C.
For marmalades and syrups this is around 3.5 whereas for caramels it is in the 4.5-5.0 pH range. pH is also checked during the various processes including the gelatinization of jams and marmalades as well as purification and refining of juices in pre-separation and saturation phases. Pasteurized items and cold salads often have a pH value of 5.3. By adding a small quantity of vinegar or lemon juice, sauces such as mayonnaise are acidified and their pH is lowered to 4.1 to prolong their shelf life.
A pH value of 2,5 to 5.5 tends to prolong the shelf life of fresh fruit and inhibit the multiplication of micro-organisms. Likewise for vegetables with a more neutral pH in the 4.6 to 6.4 range.
Checking the pH of water prior to adding it to different food processes provides a quick and simple way to guarantee the quality of the end-product. This is particularly so since the quality of water taken from the municipal water system or underground water tables vary considerably over time. Consequently, lack of proper control at an initial stage can have a detrimental effect on the consistency of the end-product.
pH plays an important role in food processing whether the objective is to make sour bread not too sour, cheese with a bite, or beer that is just right. Constant pH measurement and controlled addition of buffering agents compensates for intangible process variations and assures reliable product quality. Sper Scientific offers a complete line of pH meters and probes that provide a reliable and accurate measurement of pH. Below are few of these meters:

Indian Scientists Decode Genome Of Indian Cobra

Indian Scientists Decode Genome Of Indian Cobra

Written on 01/07/2020
Prathibha HC

Indian Cobra Genome Sequenced – Can Aid In Developing New Antivenom
A team of Indian scientists and their collaborators abroad have successfully sequenced the genome of the highly poisonous Indian Cobra, in a step taken to reduce the disability and mortality caused by snake bites.
Among the most venomous four snakes in India, which are called collectively as the infamous “big four”, the Indian cobra is the most venomous Indian snake to be genetically mapped. In India, everywhere, nearly 46,000 deaths occur due to snakebites from the four venomous snakes, the Indian cobra, saw-scaled viper, Russell’s viper, and common krait. Around 5.4 million snake bites occur every year worldwide, with 2.8 million of them in India. Globally, they are responsible for 4,00,000 disabilities, of which from India there are around 1,38,000 disabilities.
The President of the Chennai-based SciGenome Research Foundation (SGRF), Sekar Seshagiri and the scientists led by him have assembled the most contiguous genome of the cobra, using a mix of cutting-edge genomic technologies. Experts say that this will help in developing more efficient antibodies.
Scientists found in the present study that there are 19 toxin genes primarily expressed in the venom glands of the Indian cobra. Seshagiri said ” For treating Indian cobra bites, using synthetic human antibodies to target these toxins should lead to a safe and effective antivenom. We will be able to generate antibodies (antivenom) to the other three venomous snakes and develop an anti-venom quickly if we get one good antivenom against the Indian cobra and genome sequences from the other three.
Researchers from US firm Genentech, MedGonome Labs and SGRF’s AgriGenome Labs, Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary in Kerala and their peers from many universities in the US and Singapore participated in the study, along with Seshagiri’s team.
Outdated procedure
Antivenom that is currently in use is based on a process developed over 100 years ago and is produced by immunizing horses with extracted snake venom. This process suffers from a lack of consistency leading to serious side-effects and varying efficacy and ent also is a laborious process.
An author of the study, R Manjunatha Kini, Professor, National University of Singapore (NUS), Singapore said ” It is high time that we develop antivenom leveraging modern technologies like synthetic antibody development technologies, recombinant protein expression, and genomics. We have the blueprint needed to this from the Indian cobra genome and the catalog of target toxins. Venom also serves as a significant source of drug-like molecules. The genome of Indian cobra is no exception and it codes for toxin molecules that prevent blood clotting, reduce blood pressure and block pain.
Universal antivenom
The Chief Operating Officer of AgriGenome Labs, George Thomas said “The Indian cobra is the first snake to be sequenced among the ‘big four’ deadly snakes. This can effectively change the way antivenom is developed and is a major step towards understanding its venom components.”
Using this genomic blueprint for venom toxins to make recombinant proteins, to generate neutralizing antibodies and test them in the clinic would be the next step, said the scientists. Eventually, a universal antivenom can be developed by further sequencing other snake genomes and the information on additional toxins from these snakes that need to be targeted will be provided by the venom glands.
They said, “In less than 2-3 years and by testing in trials rapidly, we believe we can produce a synthetic humanized antivenom.”
A researcher with the Indian Institute of Science, Bengaluru, Karthik Sunagar said “With the state-of-the-art sequencing technologies, this is the first genome of Indian snake to be sequenced. Such a high-quality genome will be a great resource for understanding the evolution of this medically important snake and its venom repertoire and it could also be very beneficial for the next-generation recombinant antivenoms’ innovation.”


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