Novozymes, Copenhagen, Denmark, recently announced the launch of a new alpha-amylase enzyme solution that lowers pH during liquefaction. The solution is designed to break down starch in a way that creates more dextrose when compared to conventional alpha-amylases. The result is higher yields, and chemical, water and energy savings. The combined benefits may enable a starch processor to save up to $1 per tonne of substrate.

Running at pH 5.5, the enzymes used for conventional starch liquefaction require the addition of chemicals to raise pH levels before liquefaction. Chemicals are added again at the end of the process to ensure the lower pH necessary for the next step in starch processing, saccharification.

LpHera brings the liquefaction pH level as low as 4.5 to 4.8, according to the company. This means processors may reduce the use of pH chemicals in some instances by more than 50%. It also prolongs the ion exchange service cycle, which in turn enables more savings on chemicals, water and wastewater.

“We see LpHera as bringing value beyond liquefaction,” said Thomas Nilsson, global launch manager for food at Novozymes. “Producers of high-fructose syrup benefit from more efficient evaporation and water and energy savings. In crystalline dextrose production, it ensures higher crystallization yield, and when producing fermented products, it achieves higher yield and better byproducts with lower salt levels.”

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