Solid fats are used as hardstocks to develop a widespread range of structuring agents in food formulations (Omonov et al., 2010). Palm solid fractions are natural solid fats which provide improved stability for many types of food that require solid fat functionality (Pande and Akoh, 2013). Traditionally, solid fat in margarine is obtained by hydrogenation of liquid oils. Hydrogenation results in the formation of trans fatty acids which has adverse health effects (Pande and Akoh, 2013). Palm oil fractions are highly recommended to replace trans fats in margarine formulations, as it is cost efficient, easily available, has high solid fat content (avoiding hydrogenation), high oxidative stability (long shelf life), and contributes to structural hardness (Pande and Akoh, 2013). Palm solid fraction might be appropriately blended and interesterified with liquid oils in order to modify the physical characteristics of the mixture to meet the functional properties and the quality required for margarine preparation (Sellami et al., 2008).
Main Researcher: Dr. Sivaruby Kanagaratnam