Applications of Enzymes inFood and Beverages Industry

Uses of Enzymes in Food and Beverages:

  • The dynamic development of biotechnology and scientific discoveries in the field of enzymology has made enzyme preparations an indispensable element of many food technologies. 
  • The use of enzymes makes it possible to increase the speed of technological processes, significantly increase the yield of finished products, improve their quality, save valuable raw materials and reduce the amount of waste.
  • The enzyme of microbial origin is obtained by cultivating specific microorganisms capable of producing certain enzymes. 
  • Currently, most of the enzymes in the industry are produced using bacteria and mold fungi in special bioreactors (fermenters) under strictly controlled conditions. 
  • Enzyme preparations with amylolytic, proteolytic, lipolytic, pectolytic, and oxidase activity are used in food technology. 
  • They are used in brewing, winemaking, and baking, producing alcohol, fruit and vegetable juices, yeast, cheese, cottage cheese, meat and fish products, protein hydrolysates, inverted syrup, and processing of starch.
  • Food enzymes improve the quality of the product, increase the yield of this product or reduce the cost of the process, and therefore reduce the cost of production.

Why are enzymes used in Food?

Biological enzymes are catalytic organic substances produced by living cells, most of which are proteins, which can be extracted from organisms (microorganisms, plants, animals). They are generally used to catalyze particular chemical reactions.

At present, enzymes mainly include six categories: hydrolase, transferase, oxidoreductase, isomerase, resolvase, and synthetase, which are widely used in food processing, textile, petroleum, papermaking, pollution control, and other fields.

Due to the vigorous development of biotechnology, the demand for enzymes is increasing, and the global supply is in short supply. Therefore, transgenic technology develops rapidly and uses the enzymes produced in the microbial fermentation process to replace the enzymes that can only be obtained from animals and plants in the past. To meet the needs of the market.

Benefits of using Food and Beverages

  • Increases the efficiency of technological processes in food production.
  • Increases the output of finished products.
  • Improves organoleptic properties (taste, smell, texture, color, appearance, etc.).
IndustryUses of enzymes
Grain processing technologyIncreasing the yield of flour and cereals, improving the quality of gluten, the production of modified leguminous flour
BakeryReducing flour consumption, improving dough, slowing down the staling of products, and improving the color of the crust.
BrewingUse of unmalted raw materials, thinning, increased fermentation, improved filtration, beer stabilization
Dairy TechnologyCoagulation of milk, cheese production, modification of milk protein, creation of cheese flavor, and production of enzymatically modified cheeses.
Production of wine, fruit juices, carbonated drinks, canned foodClarification, removal of starch from juice, production of sweet liquors, stabilization of wines and juices, production of juices with pulp and puree
Starch processingYield increase, starch modification, liquefaction, saccharification, obtaining glucose-fruit and grain syrups
Alcohol industryRaw material conversion, starch liquefaction, saccharification, improved yeast growth, increased alcohol yield
Coffee productionSeparation of grains, control of the viscosity of extracts, improvement of taste and aroma
Protein productionHydrolysis of proteins and polysaccharides, viscosity reduction, production of modified peptides and proteins
Sugar productionRemoval of starch, proteins, and polysaccharides
Flavor productionSynthesis of delicate aromas, production of natural aromatic esters, etc.
Meat ProcessingYield increase, cape tenderization, meat extracts, protein texturization, shelf life extension

Applications of Enzymes in Food Industry

1. Alcohol/Liquor production: Starch, as the main component of the dry matter of grain raw materials, from which alcohol is formed, is not directly fermented by yeast. Therefore, it must be hydrolyzed to fermentable sugars, this requires the use of enzymes that hydrolyze starch to fermentable sugars, are a source of nitrogen nutrition for yeast, and, when starchy raw materials are saccharified, partially destroy the cell walls of raw materials. For alcohol production processing starch-containing raw materials, it is necessary to use enzyme preparations with amylolytic, proteolytic, and cytolytic effects.

2. Flour production and bakery: Enzymes for baking are used in the form of additives to flour and in the composition of dough, baking powder to compensate for the low-quality indicators of flour, and improve the structure of the dough and the quality characteristics of the finished product. Enzymes such as Protease, Xylanase, Glucose oxidase, and Lipase are used in flour production and bakery.

3. Processing of fruits, berries, and vegetables: In processing fruits, berries, and vegetables, enzymes make it possible to increase the depth of processing of raw materials and thereby reduce the amount of waste, increasing the productivity and profitability of enterprises. Enzymes such as  Pectinase, Glucoamylase, Glucose oxidase, and Invertase are used in the processing of fruits, berries, and vegetables.

4. Meat and fish processing: Enzymes are increasingly used in the processing of meat and fish. This is due to their ability to produce specific biologically active components in the tissues of meat and fish: organic acids, bacteriocins, enzymes, and vitamins, which improves the sanitary, microbiological, and organoleptic indicators of the finished product, and also allows intensifying the production process.

 Enzymatic methods improve the quality of meat, meet the growing demands of consumers and increase the degree of processing of raw materials. There are two main directions for using enzymes in the meat industry: tenderization of tough meat and restructuring of fresh low-quality meat raw materials and trimmings (trimming) to obtain a high-quality product.

In the meat industry and cooking, protein degrading enzymes ( Protease, Collagenase ) and protein cross-linking enzymes ( Transglutaminase ) are mainly used as texture improvers. Recently, new directions for the use of traditional enzymes in molecular cuisine have become popular. Examples are oxidizing enzymes for obtaining products with a given structure and obtaining the desired taste and aroma using lipases, glutaminases, proteases, and peptidases.

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