Characterization of glucose syrups

Where once DE was sufficient to describe the composition and hence properties of a glucose syrup it is now necessary to provide a more complete description owing to changes in manufacturing techniques.

The traditional method of acid hydrolysis produces a limited range of glucose syrups from starch and this remains a cost-effective means of producing syrups for a range of industries, notably for confectionery. This basic method is however being replaced by acid-enzyme and enzyme-enzyme processes which extend the range of products available and hence widen the range of properties available to the food manufacturer. High fructose glucose syrups are a development of the enzyme-enzyme techniques whereby a high DE syrup is passed through a column of the immobilized enzyme to convert a part of the dextrose to fructose. These processes are discussed in detail elsewhere in this book.

When specifying a glucose syrup the following parameters must be noted:

  • Dextrose equivalent
  • Carbohydrate composition – since it is possible to have several syrups of the same DE but with different compositions and composition is important with regard to the syrup’s properties
  • Solids content
  • Sulfur dioxide content

This will enable the syrup manufacturer to supply an exact product to meet the customer’s requirements.

The information provided in Glucose Syrups Properties will relate the properties of glucose syrups broadly to their DE although as described above, this is not strictly speaking an exact relationship. Where obvious anomalies exist these will be described. The chapter is not intended as a comprehensive reference of data on glucose syrups but rather an indication of their properties and a guide to where further detailed information can be found.

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