Four innovative frying solutions to help meet the new EU regulation on acrylamide
posted on 14 August, 2018 by Arnaud Jansse - Applications Engineer, Product Development, tna solutions
We all love a bag of chips. And while there are more and more baked varieties available, nothing beats a thinly sliced, crispy piece of fried potato! However, with the EU’s new regulation on the reduction of acrylamide now in force, manufacturers are under increased pressure to reduce the effects of the Maillard reaction that naturally occurs between amino acid and reducing sugars when starchy foods like potatoes are fried at high temperatures. But how exactly do you create a healthier fried product that still delivers the same sensory qualities consumers expect?
Here are a few options:
1) Continuous frying (with a twist)
Continuous, atmospheric fryers that are equipped with special oil flow control technology allow manufacturers to accurately control the dwell time of the chips in the hot oil to ensure that each chip is fried evenly and to perfection. For example, an innovative oil inlet section, such as our patented opti-flow® technology, can produce a more streamlined laminar oil flow over the full width and length of the fryer pan. It therefore effectively minimises the occurrence of turbulence by removing 99% of cyclone dead spots at the beginning of the fryer. This prevents debris from settling and ensures that potato slices don’t absorb or carry any excess oil. As a result, each potato chip is evenly fried, lowering the level of acrylamide and reducing the number of rejects for enhanced product quality and increased yield.
2) Vacuum frying
Vacuum fryers continuously cook products under low temperature and low pressure conditions, from start to finish. With this cutting-edge frying technology, the frying vessel is enclosed and pressure is reduced so that the boiling point of water is reduced to below 100°C. This means dehydration (the purpose of frying) can be driven by a lower oil temperature. At these low temperatures, the degradation of the product’s surface structure is reduced, lowering the amount of oil absorbed. Meanwhile, the use of high quality oil varieties is also possible. Oil oxidation is reduced due to lower frying temperatures and lack of oxygen present in the system, leading to a much longer shelf life and cost savings. As a result, manufacturers are able to create consumer appeal by improving the perceived healthfulness of their snack products.
3) Multi-stage frying
Multi-stage frying (also referred to as two-stage frying) is a tailor-made approach, which is broken down into two stages, the first of which is atmospheric pre-frying and the second, vacuum frying. During the initial stage, the product is fried at a high temperature to remove about 80% of the moisture. The process is then completed at a lower temperature (approximately 120-130°C) in a vacuum fryer. At this low temperature, acrylamide formation is very slow, almost unable to form, ensuring a safer and healthier end product.
4) Batch frying
Batch frying is an additional technology which is currently being explored to produce healthier snack products, as manufacturers look to optimise the atmospheric batch frying process – in particular when experimenting with fruit and vegetables containing high levels of starch and/or reducing sugars, such as beets, plantain, banana, cassava, or sweet potato. In comparison to continuous frying processes where products are cooked at high temperatures for a short amount of time, batch frying involves cooking at 140°C for a longer length of time. At these lower temperatures, acrylamide formation is reduced, creating safer fruit and vegetable chips.
A fryer to meet your needs
At tna, we’re experts at delivering the solutions our customers need. Contact us today, if you want to find out more about how our wide range of pre-processing and processing technology can help you create healthier snacks.
And don’t forget to for further information on each of the solutions mentioned above.