The crystallization behavior of lipids has important implications in the industrial processing of food products whose physical characteristics depend largely on the fat crystals. The crystal structure of fats is important in the formulation of shortenings, margarines and fatty products in general, since each crystal form has unique properties regarding its plasticity, texture, solubility, and whipping. In Brazil, the controversial issues about the role of trans fatty acids in the diet resulted in progressive changes in legislation and industrial use of fats, leading to the replacement of partially hydrogenated fats for blend, natural, interesterified or fractionated fats. Considering that this replacement process is relatively recent, there are problems of crystallization behavior due to the incompatibility of the new fat materials for the applications. Therefore, the adequacy of the crystallization kinetics of these fatty bases is extremely important for that its use can be adjusted to the limitations of industrial processes and to improve control of processing steps involving recrystallization, ensuring quality of products. Otherwise, processing times and already standardized equipments must be changed according to the characteristics of used fat. Emulsifiers are extremely important functional additives at food industry; they can be used to control or modify the properties of the crystallization of fats. The study of the effects of emulsifiers in fat systems is of great interest for the improvement of new fatty bases for specific purposes, as appropriate crystallization properties are difficult to obtain with the absence of trans fatty acids. The role of these compounds as modifiers of crystallization in natural and commercial fats is largely unexplored, being innovative from the point of view of the food industry. The objective of this project is to evaluate the effect of the incorporation of different fatty acid esters of sorbitan and / or their combinations on the crystallization properties of palm fat and interesterified soybean based fats. This project is linked to FAPESP theme titled "Modification, Behavior Control and Stabilization of Crystallization and Polymorphism in Fats with Emphasis on Cocoa Butter and Palm Oil", Case No. 096/53006-0, under the supervision of Professor. Dr. Theo Guenter Kieckbusch.
News published in Agência FAPESP Newsletter about the scholarship: