Production of a high-protein meal and fermentable sugars from defatted soybean meal, a co-product of the soybean oil industry



The goal of this research was to produce a high-protein meal by treating defatted soybean meal, a by-product of soybean oil production, with dilute acid. Treatments were a mild hydrolysis at 80 °C with sulphuric acid at concentrations ranging from 0.5% to 2.0% (w/v) and times varying from 1 to 16 h that were arranged according to a central composite rotatable experimental design. The end products were an enhanced-protein meal and a carbohydrate concentrate of fermentable and nonfermentable sugars. The highest protein content rise, from 48% to 58%, was for treatments with concentrations of acid ranging between 1.2% and 1.7% and times between 1.0 and 2.6 h. The maximum yield of fermentable sugar was 21.0% d.b. at 2.0% H2SO4 and treatments of at least 6 h. The conditions that provide a highest protein and sugar contents were the treatments with concentrations of sulphuric acid ranging from 0.9 to 1.9% H2SO4 for 1–4 h.