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Which Antioxidant Should Be Used?

While many compounds may have antioxidant properties, the number of these compounds to be used in food applications is relatively few due to safety and economics. Antioxidants are classified as food additives, and in the U.S., are subject to the United States Federal Food Drug and Cosmetic Act.

There are four common antioxidants that are used in most food applications: Tertiary-Butylhydroquinone (TBHQ), Propyl Gallate (PG), Butylated Hydroxyanisole (BHA), and Butylated Hydroxytoluene (BHT). These primary antioxidants can also be used in conjunction with chelating agents, such as citric acid, to create greater efficacy. Ortec, Inc. prepares solutions containing assorted combinations of these antioxidants. These solutions ensure that the antioxidants can be dispersed throughout the target food product.

To be effective, the antioxidant of choice must be soluble and well dispersed into the fat or oil. Therefore, the already dissolved REACTISOL solutions are prepared for ease of use by the food processor.

Tertiary Butylhydroquinone

Tertiary Butylhydroquinone (TBHQ) is effective for a wide variety of lipids. It is often used directly in vegetable derived oils, and foods containing those vegetable oils. It is also used in the preparation of other food categories such as confections, non-dairy toppings, coffee whiteners and snack dips. TBHQ has been shown to be highly effective in extending shelf life for many products.

TBHQ has a large ratio of hydrophilic to hydrophobic balance. This causes it to be very active with bulk oils, which have a small surface to volume ratio. It also provides very good color and flavor stability, and has excellent carry through properties in frying oils.

Propyl Gallate

Propyl Gallate (PG) is a very effective antioxidant that can be used in various highly unsaturated fats and oils. It can be combined with BHA, BHT, and/or citric acid. It is sometimes substituted for vegetable oils in some countries where TBHQ has not yet been approved. PG is relatively unstable during baking and frying, however.

Butylated Hydroxyanisole

Butylated Hydroxylanisole (BHA) is an excellent antioxidant for a number of fats and oils because of its solubility. BHA is a more lipophilic antioxidant and is more effective with oil in water emulsions such as salad dressings. One of the main uses of BHA is in packaging material for the cereal industry.

Butylated Hydroxytoluene

Butylated Hydroxytoluene is highly soluble in fats. It shares many common characteristics with BHA, and is often used in conjunction with other antioxidants.





Ortec, Inc
Phone: 864-859-1471 or email.
PO Box 1469 Easley SC 29641