Generic specifications like
- FFA, POV, Moisture and Colour
- Heavy metals (Fe or Cu)
These specifications are internationally agreed values or can be
obtained from the fat supplier.
Specifications depending on the application:
- N-values or SFC; important for melting behaviour, crystallisation,
heat stability at higher temperatures
- Fatty acid composition, such as Safa, Pufa, trans content or
- Triglyceride composition, influencing crystallisation rate and
- Taste keepability
How to define specifications?
The better the requirements for the application can be described
the better the specifications for the fat can be defined:
- N35 or solids at 35°C determines the melting at body temperature.
This is more important for a fat for cream application than for
- The steepness of the N-line (like N20-N30) determines the crystallisation
rate together with the type of triglycerides. More steepness gives
also a cooling effect at consumption of the food with this fat.
- The N35 and e.g. N40 determines the stability for high temperature
- The N10 will influence the hardness of the final product at
refrigerator conditions (spreadability of a margarine).
It is also important to know at which temperatures the fat is applied
and at which temperature the final product is distributed/stored;
some examples are:
- The constraints for pastry fat/margarine applied in Europe at
20°C will differ from the constraints of a pastry fat applied
in a 30°C country.
- A fat for cream filling between biscuits can be much softer
in colder countries than in warmer countries especially when there
is no chilled distribution/storage
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