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Designer colloids in structured food for the future


Correspondence to: Maelle Douaire, Department of Chemical Engineering, University of Birmingham Edgbaston, Birmingham, B15 2TT, UK. E-mail:


Recent advances in the understanding of colloids has enabled the design of food products that are healthier and tastier, in line with consumer expectations. Specifically, emulsion design and hydrocolloid structuring can be used to address the issue of fat reduction in foods by allowing the production of reduced fat products that provide similar sensory attributes. Additionally, various techniques for encapsulating molecules, such as flavour, nutraceuticals or drugs, are now being developed. The application of such techniques in food products can improve micronutrient bioavailability by means of targeted and controlled delivery, increasing the nutritional value. Colloidal structures can also be designed to enhance consumer experience, mimic fat or control satiety. Such novel improvements, as well as their potential translation into commercial food products, are highlighted in this paper, which focuses primarily on the areas of emulsion technologies and hydrocolloids. © 2013 Society of Chemical Industry