Citric acid is a natural, weak organic acid that is found in many fruits and vegetables, especially citrus.
It is known for its sour flavor, preservative quality, and it’s ability to act as a pH buffer and because of these characteristics, citric acid is found in the ingredient list of many food products today.Some of it’s applications are mentioned below.
Citric Acid Applications In Food Industry
1.Wines: Prevents turbidity, inhibits oxidation and adjusts pH
2.Soft Drinks: Gives a cool taste as well as maintains carbonation.
4.Reduces heat processing requirements by lowering pH.
5.Eliminates haze due to trace metals.
7.Supplement antioxidant potential
8.As preservative(Microbial Growth Inhibitor).
In Food Industry
4.Produces Dark Colour in Hard Candies, jams, jellies
1.Prevents oxidation of ascorbic acid and change in colour and flavour.
2.Inactivates Trace Metals
3.Neutralizes residual lye.
1.Acts as an antioxidant and emulsifier in cheese, ice-cream.
2.Help in coagulation of milk for the preparation of paneer.
1.OPTIMIZE FLAVOUR: Citric Acid is added to canned fruits to provide for adequate tartness.Recommended usage level is generally less than 0.15%.
2.REDUCTION IN HEAT PROCESSING REQUIREMENT BY LOWERING pH: Inhibition of microbial growth is a function of pH and heat treatment.Higher heat exposure and lower pH results in greater inhibition.Thus the use of citric acid to bring pH below 4.6 can reduce the heating requirements.In canned vegetables, citric acid usage is greatest in tomato and onions.
For tomato packs, The National Canners Association recommends a pH of 4.1 to 4.3.
3.SUPPLEMENT ANTIOXIDANT POTENTIAL: Citric Acid is used in conjunction with antioxidants such as ascorbic acid, to inhibit color and flavor deterioration caused by metal catalyzed enzymatic oxidation.
Usage Levels – 0.1%-0.3% with antioxidant at 100 to 200ppm.
4.INACTIVATE UNDESIRABLE ENZYMES: Oxidative browning in most fruits and vegetables is catalyzed by the naturally present polyphenol oxidase. The enzymatic activity is strongly dependent on pH. Addition of citric acid to reduce in inactivation of polyphenol oxidase enzyme and prevention of browning reactions.
Fruits And Vegetable Preservation (Principles And Practices) By Sanjeev Sharma & R.P. Srivastava