2022 Effect of Conformation of Sugar Beet Pectin on the Interfacial and Emulsifying Properties

Benjamin Bindereif, Heike Petra Karbstein, Katharina Zahn and Ulrike Sabine van der Schaaf *

Foods 2022, 11(2), 214; DOI.org/10.3390/foods11020214

Chair of Food Process Engineering, Institute of Process Engineering in Life Sciences, Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, 76131 Karlsruhe, Germany


The influence of the conformation of sugar beet pectin (SBP) on the interfacial and emulsifying properties was investigated. The colloidal properties of SBP, such as zeta potential and hydrodynamic diameter, were characterized at different pH levels. Furthermore, pendant drop tensiometry and quartz crystal microgravimetry were used to study adsorption behavior (adsorbed mass and adsorption rate) and stabilizing mechanism (layer thickness and interfacial tension). A more compact conformation resulted in a faster reduction of interfacial tension, higher adsorbed mass, and a thicker adsorption layer. In addition, emulsions were prepared at varying conditions (pH 3–5) and formulations (1–30 wt% MCT oil, 0.1–2 wt% SBP), and their droplet size distributions were measured. The smallest oil droplets could be stabilized at pH 3. However, significantly more pectin was required at pH 3 compared to pH 4 or 5 to sufficiently stabilize the oil droplets. Both phenomena were attributed to the more compact conformation of SBP at pH < pKa: On the one hand, pectins adsorbed faster and in greater quantity, forming a thicker interfacial layer. On the other hand, they covered less interfacial area per SBP molecule. Therefore, the SBP concentration must be chosen appropriately depending on the conformation.