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Emulsifiers in confectionery applications

Chocolate bars, filled chocolate, and seasonal Easter eggs are all made by pouring liquid chocolate into a mould. For these and other chocolate applications, such as coatings for ice cream and biscuits, control of flow properties is essential to ensure the liquid chocolate can be pumped and easily handled. All air bubbles should be removed from moulded chocolate, and chocolate coatings should be a thin, uniform layer. To define ease of flow, manufacturers often use terms such as plastic viscosity and yield value - both of which are influenced by emulsifiers.

The development of small, white spots on the surface of chocolate is a problem manufacturers know as “bloom”. This occurs as a result of changes in the crystal structure during storage - an inevitable development over time. Improper storage (fluctuating temperatures) speeds up bloom formation. Emulsifiers can be added to delay the development, making chocolate look shiny and appetizing for longer periods.

The emulsifiers typically used to improve chocolate flow properties are various lecithins (E322, E342), polyglycerol polyricinoleate (PGPR, E476), citric acid esters (E472c) and ammoniumphosphatide (E442). Sorbitan tristearate (STS, E492) is added to delay bloom formation.

Caramels and toffees
In caramels and toffees, emulsifiers are commonly used to control stickiness and create a more homogeneous product without fat on the surface.

The typically used emulsifier is mono- and diglycerides of fatty acids (E 471)

Sugar confectionery
In sugar confectionery, emulsifiers provide improved flavour release and texture modification (i.e., reduced stickiness).

Typically used emulsifiers are mono- and diglycerides of fatty acids (E 471) and sucrose esters of fatty acids (E 473).

Chewing gum
In chewing gum, emulsifiers are used to improve flavour release and prevent the gum from sticking to teeth. They can also be use to improve softness and the ability to form bubbles - including the large bubbles in bubble gum.

Typically used emulsifiers are mono- and diglycerides of fatty acids (E 471), acetic acid esters of mono- and diglycerides of fatty acids (E 472a) and sucrose esters of fatty acids (E 473)

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