Today, Novozymes announced the launch of a new enzyme targeting the production of maltose syrups. The new product, known as Secura, helps to optimize operations and reduce processing costs. The starch industry is one of the longest-standing markets for enzymes, and produces a wide range of sweeteners and ingredients used within the food industry.

Bringing stability to saccharification
Secura is a thermostable, low-pH beta amylase enzyme for maltose syrup production. Secura has a higher product activity than plant-sourced beta amylase products – and this activity level remains stable during storage. This stability results in simpler, more consistent dosing and processing that does not need constant monitoring. As Secura is microbial-based, it is Chometz-free Kosher and Halal-certified, which is becoming increasingly important in the sweetener market.

“The fact that Secura tolerates higher temperatures offers an important benefit to starch producers,” says Frederik Mejlby, Marketing Director for Novozymes' Grain Processing. “Maltose syrups are typically produced at lower temperatures 55°-60° C, and have a relatively low osmotic pressure. This means that there is a risk that unwanted microorganisms can grow during saccharification. Keeping saccharification at higher temperature minimizes the risk of bacterial infections - and Secura works well at temperatures as high as 70° C.”

Simpler operations with lower costs
Traditionally, maltose syrup production requires a pH increase from 4.0 to 5.6 before the liquefaction step, and a further adjustment to lower pH again for the next step in the starch process, saccharification. This double pH adjustment requires chemicals.  Using both LpHera and Secura means that the process can run at pH 4.8 throughout both liquefaction and saccharification.

“Starch producers have been asking for new ways to make starch conversion more efficient. Last year, we launched LpHera to simplify the liquefaction process, now we are helping ease the saccharification process in maltose syrup production with Secura,” says Frederik Mejlby. “Like LpHera, Secura is very pH robust. So when used together maltose syrup production can run at a lower pH from liquefaction to saccharification.  This saves on chemicals for pH adjustment, ion exchange resins and regeneration chemicals – and this translates to cash savings.”

A sweeter look at a complex industry
Starch is the energy source of plants and can be found in cereals, tubers, roots and other plants. Globally, approximately 60 million tons of starch is converted into sweeteners and ingredients per year, and these are used in a wide variety of popular consumer food products, including confectionery, soft drinks, sauces and canned fruits.

There are four basic steps involved in starch conversion – separation, liquefaction, saccharification and isomerization. Separation is the first stage where the raw material is milled to separate fractions: the starch from the oil, protein and fibers. Enzymes can be used to ease this process.  The next step is liquefaction, and this is where alpha-amylases break down the large starch molecules into smaller ones called maltodextrins. In the third stage, saccharification, enzymes break the maltodextrins into even smaller molecules.  Depending on the desired end product, different enzymes are used during this stage, but when making maltose syrups, beta amylases are often used.  And this is where Novozymes’ new innovation, Secura, can make a difference.

Contact: Debbie Spilane