Acrylamide: Are You Doing Enough?

Chocolate chip cookies in a bowl on a table.
What Is Acrylamide?

Acrylamide is a naturally-occurring compound formed through the Maillard reaction during the baking process, when the amino acid asparagine reacts with reducing sugars such as glucose and fructose. It is often found in low-moisture foods that are cooked at high temperatures like crackers, cookies, chips and French fries.

In addition to being highly toxic and a skin irritant in a concentrated exposure, acrylamide is considered carcinogenic due to tumor initiation properties.  Understandably, consumer concern towards acrylamide in food products has driven regulatory bodies to address this concern, with California and Europe leading the charge.

The Impact of Acrylamide Concern on Food Manufacturers

Europe has set limitations in Commission Regulation (EU) 2017/2158, and California has added acrylamide to the listed chemicals in Proposition 65. Consumer awareness of acrylamide in North America was heightened in 2017 when a class action lawsuit was filed against manufacturers of animal crackers that failed to meet the limitations in California.

This begs the question, what should food manufacturers be doing to limit acrylamide in their products to both ensure regulatory compliance and address consumer concerns?

Identify Your Baseline

For starters, it’s important that manufacturers of such products conduct regular reviews of the acrylamide content in their products.

Reduce, Reduce, Reduce

Once you know your acrylamide content, you can look for solutions to reduce its presence in your finished goods.

How to Reduce Acrylamide Presence

As a manufacturer, there are two approaches you can take to reduce acrylamide presence in your products. Firstly, you can address the production-related formation factors that contribute to acrylamide production.

Acrylamide formation factors include:
  • High processing temperatures
  • pH value in the neutral and alkaline spectrum
  • Sufficient amount of the amino acid asparagine
  • Sufficient amount of reducing sugars
  • Absence of excess moisture

Alternatively, there are ingredient solutions that are process-tolerant to help you reduce your acrylamide content, without uprooting your operations.

Ingredient Solution: Anti-Acrylamide Additive

At Blendtek, we’re here to support you. That’s why we’re proud to offer an ingredient solution that addresses your acrylamide challenges. This additive can be used in bakery, snack and savoury applications – prior to the heating process – to mitigate acrylamide contamination during processing. Beyond its ability to diminish acrylamide contamination, this ingredient solution is:

  • Cost-effective
  • Organic compliant
  • Process-tolerant
Let’s Team Up.

At Blendtek Ingredients, our priority is to support your team. From our consulting services and formulation expertise, through to sourcing ingredients within our trusted supply network, we will accelerate the success of your product pipeline with ingredient solutions that deliver.

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