Forschungs- & Entwicklungsinformationsdienst der Gemeinschaft - CORDIS

Industrial process for the production of lupin food ingredients

The project work focused on the development and evaluation of successful processes to produce functional lupin protein isolates and concentrates with improved sensory and nutritional properties. Two different processes have been developed and implemented:
- Fraunhofer IVV researchers developed an innovative process to separate native protein products from sweet white lupin seeds (L. albus). With this new process, efficient protein enrichment and purification was accomplished. The process starts with dry-milling (cleaning, de-hulling, flaking) of the seeds followed by de-oiling with hexane to get white flakes (50-55% protein, <2% fat) as an input material for the protein extraction. The following mild aqueous extraction and purification delivered two types protein isolates with more than 90% of protein (N*6.25): Lupin protein isolate type E (LPI-E) recovered by isoelectric precipitation, with a good emulsifying capacity, and lupin protein isolate type F (LPI-F), ) isolated by acid extraction and subsequent ultra-/diafiltration showing a high capability of foam formation and stabilization. The protein extraction was accomplished in a new pilot plant facility, with batches of 150 kg to 200 kg of white flakes. Within the project, a sequence of experiments was performed in order to select the best conditions for the separation and drying of the lupin protein isolates and to guarantee the reproducibility of product yields and quality. Low temperature-time exposure and a careful selection of the processing conditions, preserved the native protein properties and permitted to obtain ingredients with low thermal damage. About 29% to 31% of the input dry mass and around 50% to 55% of the initial protein could be recovered as protein isolates, 29% of LPI-E and 2.5% of LPI-F. The reproducibility of the protein extraction process was demonstrated on two different varieties of white lupin.

- Bioraf has developed a process without flour defatting (non-solvent), based on the use of enzymes and subsequent ultrafiltration of the protein extract. This process delivered a native protein concentrate, Protein VI, with a protein concentration of 80-90% and fat content around 7.8%) The process results in four fractions respectively hulls, fibres, low molecular weight compounds and a protein isolate (Protein VI) containing 90 % protein (N x 6,25). The Protein VI isolate contain proteins largely reflected by the profile of the proteins found in the seeds. These proteins differ when the different seed sources are used (L. luteus compared to L. albus) with respect to both protein subunits (determined by SDS-PAGE) and isoelectric points (determined by isoelectric focusing, IEF). Apart from the proteins contained in the protein isolate other compound groups are represented covering lipid, lipid soluble compounds and various other low molecular compounds as well as ash. Other lipid soluble compounds as fat soluble vitamins and phenolics contributing as antioxidants are as well in part retained in the protein product VI. Evaluation of the functionality properties of Protein VI shows that the emulsifying properties are competitive in different applications compared to solvent defatted protein isolates. However, Protein VI do not show foaming properties.

The economical feasibility of both process was investigated by cost models. Based on the assumptions and estimates made in the models, the processing of white and yellow lupins into lupin protein isolates would be an economically feasible investment.
Terrena, the third partner, was in charge of the selection and supplying of lupin seeds for the production of lupin protein concentrates or isolates by the other partners. Three varieties gave good results for the following criteria : stability of the protein, fat and fibre contents, year after year, low level of antinutritional compounds (especially alkaloids), stability of the yield in culture : between 25 and 40 quintals/ha. The three varieties selected are the following: Aster, a winter variety, Energy and Ares, springtime varieties.

Unfortunately, because of the non-availability of two varieties the two last years, only Ares could be sent to the other partners for production of lupin concentrates and isolates. Terrena produced lupin flour and improved its features in order to use it as raw material in concentrate and isolates production.

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