Monday, September 02, 2019

Chelating agents

Free metal ions in food systems may form insoluble or colored compounds or catalyze degradation of food components, resulting in precipitation, discoloration, rancidity or loss of nutritional quality.

Chelating agents (sometimes referred to as sequestering agents) inhibit undesirable reactions in foods by complexing metal ions. This effect is called chelation and the complexes formed are referred to as chelates.

Chelate is derived from a Greek word meaning the claws of a lobster and somehow the chelators act in this way. Chelating agents are not anti-oxidants. Chelating agents such as malic acid, citric acid and tartaric acid are used to prevent the flavor changes, discoloration and rancidity of the foods.

EDTA is a chelating agent permitted for use in the food industry as a chemical preservative. Calcium disodium EDTA and disodium EDTA have been approved for use as food additives by the United States Food and Drug Administration.
Chelating agents

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