Kinetics of acrylamide formation in potato chips



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Texas A&M University


Acrylamide is considered a carcinogen in animals and a possible carcinogen in humans. It has been found in starch rich foods cooked at high temperatures. Vacuum frying (10 Torr) was studied as a possible alternative to reduce acrylamide formation in potato chips. Seven potato cultivars were analyzed to determine their influence on acrylamide formation during traditional and vacuum frying. The White Rose cultivar produced the highest level of acrylamide during both traditional and vacuum frying. Vacuum frying (10 Torr, 118oC, 8 min) produced chips with lower acrylamide content than those produced under traditional frying (165oC, 4 min) for all cultivars. The cultivar Atlantic was used to determine the kinetics of acrylamide formation during traditional and vacuum frying at different temperatures because it is a good chipping cultivar and it was the most abundant in the lab. Acrylamide accumulation under vacuum frying was modeled using first-order kinetics, and during traditional frying it was modeled using the logistic kinetic model. The behavior of the kinetics of acrylamide content in potato chips fried under the two processes was different mainly due to the different temperatures used. During traditional frying, higher temperatures areused (150oC to 180oC) and acrylamide after some time is produced but also starts degrading, producing a constant level of acrylamide content at longer times. During vacuum frying (10 Torr), acrylamide increased exponentially (but at lower levels) for all frying times. The effect of potato components was studied by infusing leached potato slices with predetermined amounts of glucose and asparagine. Increasing glucose and asparagine content in the slices increased the acrylamide content in the potato chips. Color could not be used as an indication of acrylamide content, since potato chips with similar color had very different acrylamide concentrations.