Monday, 12 January 2009
There are several flour improvers available on the market and they include:
Potassium bromate (E924), Ascorbic acid, Azodicarbonamide (E927a), Carbamide (E927b) and Phosphates
Flour bleaching agents include:
Chlorine (E925), Chlorine dioxide (E926), Benzoyl peroxide (E928), Calcium peroxide, Nitrogen dioxide and Azodicarbonamide (E927a)
Potassium bromate and ascorbic acid are used in some countries as maturing agents and benzoyl peroxide as a bleaching agent. Potassium bromate is also used in treating barley in beer making and has been used for the improvement of the quality of fish paste products in Japan.
Potassium bromate exerts nephrotoxic and ototoxic effects in experimental animals as well as in man.
The use of potassium bromate, chlorine and peroxides in food products is not allowed in the European Union. Potassium bromate has been banned from use in food products in the United Kingdom in 1990, and Canada in 1994, and most other countries. It was banned in Sri Lanka in 2001 and China in 2005. It is also banned in Nigeria, Brazil and Peru.
Surprisingly, it has not been banned in the United States. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) sanctioned the use of bromate before the Delaney clause of the Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act went into effect in 1958 – which bans carcinogenic substances. Since 1991, the FDA has urged bakers to voluntarily stop using potassium bromate. In California, a warning label is required when bromated flour is used.
Azodicarbonamide is used in food industry as a flour bleaching agent and improving agent. When it reacts with flour, it behaves as a hydrogen acceptor, and is quickly and completely converted to biurea, which is stable even during baking. The reaction occurs only during wetting of the dough. In the United States, acceptable doses for flour treatment range between 0-45 ppm.
In the UK, the Health and Safety Executive has identified azodicarbonamide as a respiratory sensitiser (a possible cause of asthma). Use of azodicarbonamide as a food additive is banned in Australia and in Europe for ethical reasons. In Singapore, the use of azodicarbonamide can result in up to 15 years imprisonment and a fine of $450,000.
If you have any comments regarding this post, please feel free to add them here.
Tuesday, 23 December 2008
To promote this transfer of technology the IRCC (Industrial Research & Consultancy Center) have organised the 'First Sudanese Diaspora International Conference' in conjunction with the University of Sussex to be held in the UK (Brighton) from the 23rd to the 25th January 2009
The conference is expected to attract experts and scholars from all over the world and will aim to learn lessons from other successful communities to emulate ideas and innovations for the benefit of Sudan.
Discussion topics include the role of Science, Technology and Innovation in Sustainable Development, future ecological, political and economic systems, and learning and collaboration platforms. With the aim being to establish a network of interested parties and make the conference a significant International and annual event.
To find out more about the work of the group, to get involved or to find out more about the conference you should visit the UNESCOTT website where you will find more detail and contact names
Tuesday, 9 December 2008
I saw an interesting article this week in the ‘Analytical Chemistry Magazine’, a journal available online from The American Chemical Society.
The article points out that the LIMS is becoming an important and standard part of the modern laboratory, however, it also gives a (wise) word of warning about the significant investment required - not only financially, but also resources in planning and development.
It also provides a useful guide to some of the main components required for a LIMS and a useful discussion about systems analysis, project management and forward planning.
If you are considering implementing a LIMS at some stage in the future make sure you leave yourself adequate time to plan and evaluate potential systems before committing. For additional information have a look at the Scientific Computing website by following this link
Please feel free to discuss this topic by leaving a comment or by posting a new topic under this category.
all the best,
Monday, 8 December 2008
The Pan African Chemistry Network (PACN) represents an innovative approach to working with universities, schools, scientists, teachers, and students in Africa with a special focus on the millennium development Goals for Africa, this network will ultimately span the entire continent.
This first hub, based at the University of Nairobi in Kenya, has been funded with the assistance of a ₤1million grant from agribusiness Syngenta. Royal Society of chemistry is supporting and promoting the creation of a knowledge–sharing network for African chemical scientists. As Alejandra Palermo, the RSC special projects manager said “The network is organised on a hub and spoke model to reflect local needs. Scientists will meet through a programme of seminars, conferences and workshops. Fellowships and grants will be awarded to enable active participation in these events and to further enhance networking, technology transfer and skills development by facilitating international mobility of key scientists”. RSC NEWS July 2008 www.rsc.org/pacn
I think with the advances in information and communication technologies, coupled with increasing recognition of diasporas as partners in development it will offer unique opportunities for SATS Ltd to participate in efforts to strengthen the science and technology capabilities of Africa.
It is argued that scientific progress in Africa is held back by, among other things, the dilapidated state of scientific equipment in laboratories and other research facilities. When making bids for funds to purchase scientific equipment, government and institutions may consider them as invaluable assets for the success of an institution’s activities bringing about development. However, the acquisition, use and management of these assets is fraught with problems (for example management, maintenance and PM), which compromise the quality and quantity of the desired output.
I think to build strong science and technology capacity in Africa the continent should establish a strong Scientific Equipment Policy (e.g., equipment selection, standardisation, installation, user training, maintenance training, etc). To start with, there should be many advanced national or regional training facility labs that can offer training courses to cover instrument operation, maintenance, calibration, method development, quality systems …..etc). It would be very difficult to hold these courses in UK or USA particularly for those like junior chemists and technicians interested in improving their skills.
Let me know your thoughts on this matter.