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Certification of three rice Reference Materials for amylose content


Amylose content is considered the single most important characteristic for predicting rice cooking and processing quality. Accurate amylose determinations are therefore a key factor in the selection of new rice varieties in breeding programmes which will be required to bring the EU to self-sufficiency in long-grain rice. A study was undertaken to improve the accuracy of amylose determination in rice by producing small quantities of amylose and amylopectin calibrants and using them to standardise the amylose contents of three rice samples according to ISO Standard 6647. Amylose was selected from three different commercial preparations on the basis of iodine binding capacity and amylopectin was prepared in the laboratory from waxy rice. Three rice batches of low, medium and high amylose contents were selected, prepared and packaged. The amylose content of 25 sachets out of each of the three rice batches were within the range defined by the repeatability and reproducibility defined in ISO 6647. No significant change to the amylose contents of the three batches was observed after storage at 21 days at 30 C or for 9 months at 4 C. Two preliminary intercomparisons of ISO method 6647 were carried out. The best results were obtained within nine laboratories in seven EU countries by prior defatting and solubilisation of starch by heating in sodium hydroxide to boiling point for 10 min. This method is now being used for certification of the amylose content according to ISO 6647 in the three rice batches.


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