As a food product, algae are a real goldmine. They are rich in vitamins, minerals, trace elements and fibre. In Asia, food products containing algae have long been on the menu. These marine suppliers of nutrients are regarded as a healthy delicacy. In Germany however, food products made with algae are a rarity – algae are mostly used here in the pharmaceuticals and cosmetics industries. ttz Bremerhaven and Meierei Langenhorn, a North German dairy, want to establish this vitamin-rich food on the supermarket shelf.
In the framework of “Algaefood”, a project funded by the national government, ttz Bremerhaven and Meierei Langenhorn, a dairy in North Germany, are developing milk products containing algae which aim to prevent and compensate for dietary deficiencies. Curd cheese and (cream) cheese products are enriched with previously treated North Sea algae and in this way transformed into functional foods which – apart from their nutritional value –also have a healthy effect.
Macroalgae are characterized by their high value in terms of nutritional physiology: They contain a high concentration of minerals, vitamins, trace elements and fibre and have a low fat content. The food products developed by ttz Bremerhaven and Meierei Langenhorn are expected to increase consumers’ quality of life and lead to a richer variety of tastes. Raising the popularity of food products containing algae will contribute to a general improvement in health.
In its food production, the “Algaefood” project uses young North Sea macroalgae from aquaculture which are obtained from an algae farm on the island of Sylt. The controlled ecological cultivation has a positive influence on the mineral content, the content of secondary plant metabolites and the heavy metal concentration of the algae. The algae are processed by ttz Bremerhaven and the dairy in Langenhorn using specially developed crushing processes and drying technologies such as air, freeze and fluidized bed drying and then added to curd cheese and (cream) cheese products. The recipes developed by Meierei Langenhorn are created in such a manner that the algae have a positive influence on the taste, texture and appearance of the milk products.
With the help of various analysis processes (HPLC and IC), ttz Bremerhaven examined the nutritional content and secondary plant metabolites in the macroalgae prior to and after processing. This guarantees that these valuable substances are preserved in the end product after the drying and crushing processes. Further analyses examined whether the algae contain critical substances such as heavy metals or pathogenic germs such as Listeria, E. coli or staphylococci.
Laminaria saccharina, a type of brown algae, is used for the process. It contains a large number of minerals such as calcium and magnesium, as well as trace elements such as iron, and the vitamins A, B1, B2, B3, B12, C and E. The nutrients are absorbed in the gastrointestinal tract, the main part of the digestive tract, with the help of secondary plant metabolites such as proanthocyanidins. The iodine content of the Laminaria saccharina from the Sylt algae farm is about ten times lower than the fully grown algae obtained from the sea and is suitable for consumers with an iodine deficiency. Whilst an iodine deficiency interferes with the thyroid function, too high iodine consumption also has harmful health effects. In Germany, which is an iodine-deficient country, the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Ernährung (German Nutrition Society) recommends a daily iodine supply of about 0.2 milligrams of iodine for adults and adolescents and the maximum daily dose is 0.5 milligrams of iodine. In the cream cheese recipes developed, a maximum amount of 0.092 milligrams of iodine per 100 grams of product was used. 100 grams of low-fat curd cheese contain a maximum of 0.047 milligrams of iodine.
In the framework of sensory tasting trials, ttz Bremerhaven examined the acceptance threshold of seven testers towards the algae. The maximum addition of iodine from algae must not be exceeded in order not to have a negative influence on the product. On the basis of the results, Meierei Langenhorn developed recipes for curd cheese and (cream) cheese products. Curd cheese with algae as well as with different spices, herbs and salmon was tested. In its sensory laboratory, ttz Bremerhaven then determined consumers’ acceptance and willingness to buy. In accordance with the target group, 60 men and women between 20 and 65 years of age rated curd cheese products containing algae. The tasting trials were carried out as a blind test, i.e. no information was given about the manufacturer or the product’s packaging. The testers were open-minded towards these nutritious food products: Two of the curd cheese products containing algae, curd cheese with Indian spices and curd cheese with wild garlic, could be marketed later once the recipes have been refined.
ttz Bremerhaven is a provider of research services and performs application-based research and development. Under the umbrella of ttz Bremerhaven, an international team of experts is working in the areas of food, environment and health.Contact:
Christian Colmer | idw
Study suggests possible new target for treating and preventing Alzheimer's
02.12.2016 | Oregon Health & Science University
The first analysis of Ewing's sarcoma methyloma opens doors to new treatments
01.12.2016 | IDIBELL-Bellvitge Biomedical Research Institute
A multi-institutional research collaboration has created a novel approach for fabricating three-dimensional micro-optics through the shape-defined formation of porous silicon (PSi), with broad impacts in integrated optoelectronics, imaging, and photovoltaics.
Working with colleagues at Stanford and The Dow Chemical Company, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign fabricated 3-D birefringent...
In experiments with magnetic atoms conducted at extremely low temperatures, scientists have demonstrated a unique phase of matter: The atoms form a new type of quantum liquid or quantum droplet state. These so called quantum droplets may preserve their form in absence of external confinement because of quantum effects. The joint team of experimental physicists from Innsbruck and theoretical physicists from Hannover report on their findings in the journal Physical Review X.
“Our Quantum droplets are in the gas phase but they still drop like a rock,” explains experimental physicist Francesca Ferlaino when talking about the...
The Max Planck Institute for Physics (MPP) is opening up a new research field. A workshop from November 21 - 22, 2016 will mark the start of activities for an innovative axion experiment. Axions are still only purely hypothetical particles. Their detection could solve two fundamental problems in particle physics: What dark matter consists of and why it has not yet been possible to directly observe a CP violation for the strong interaction.
The “MADMAX” project is the MPP’s commitment to axion research. Axions are so far only a theoretical prediction and are difficult to detect: on the one hand,...
Broadband rotational spectroscopy unravels structural reshaping of isolated molecules in the gas phase to accommodate water
In two recent publications in the Journal of Chemical Physics and in the Journal of Physical Chemistry Letters, researchers around Melanie Schnell from the Max...
The efficiency of power electronic systems is not solely dependent on electrical efficiency but also on weight, for example, in mobile systems. When the weight of relevant components and devices in airplanes, for instance, is reduced, fuel savings can be achieved and correspondingly greenhouse gas emissions decreased. New materials and components based on gallium nitride (GaN) can help to reduce weight and increase the efficiency. With these new materials, power electronic switches can be operated at higher switching frequency, resulting in higher power density and lower material costs.
Researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE together with partners have investigated how these materials can be used to make power...
16.11.2016 | Event News
01.11.2016 | Event News
14.10.2016 | Event News
02.12.2016 | Medical Engineering
02.12.2016 | Agricultural and Forestry Science
02.12.2016 | Physics and Astronomy