In this brief guide, we will answer the query, “Is e412 vegan?” and will discuss the composition and uses of e412.
Is e412 vegan?
Yes, e412 is vegan. Guar Gum, also known as E412, is completely vegan and includes no animal ingredients. E412 comes from a single plant, the Guar plant.
Guar gum, often known as guaran, is a natural food additive made from the endosperm of guar bean seeds grown primarily in India and Pakistan. It has the European food additive code E412 and is often used as a thickening, emulsifier, and stabilizer in ice cream.
This ingredient is keto-friendly, vegan, gluten-free, and frequently used in meals as a xanthan gum alternative.
A total 90% of guar is produced by India and Pakistan only out of which 80% is manufactured by India only. In the year 2013-14, approximately 650 thousand tons of guar gum was manufactured in India, out of which 601 thousand tons was traded, more than 50% of which was exported to USA (2)
What exactly is guar gum?
Guar gum is a natural product derived from the maceration of the seed of Cyamopsis tetragonoloba (Linne) Taub. or Cyamopsis psoralioides (Lam.) D.C., a member of the Leguminosae family. Guar was brought into the United States before World War I primarily as a green manure but was not used in industrial applications until 1943 (1).
The guar kernel is composed of several layers, namely the outer husk (16–18%), the germ (43–46%) and the endosperm (34–40%). The germ portion of its seed is predominantly protein and the endosperm predominantly galactomannan. Guar gum mainly consists of the high molecular weight polysaccharides of galactomannans which are linear chain of (1→4)-linked β-D-mannopyranosyl units with (1→6)-linked α-D-galactopyranosyl residues as side chains. These galactose and mannose groups constitute the galactomannan portion of seed endosperm (1).
Galactomannans contribute a considerable amount of guar gum, just as they do in locust bean gum and Tara gum, which is why it is also chemically defined as galactomannans. Galactomannans are polymer polysaccharide that contains mannose and galactose in a 2:1 ratio in the guar gum, 3:1 in Tara gum, and 4:1 in LBG.
What is the composition of Guar gum?
This edible gum is usually made up of the following ingredients (1):
· Galactomannan guarantees a minimum of 75%.
· 5–6 percent protein
· 2.5 percent fiber
· 8–15 percent moisture
· 0.5–0.8 percent ash
· Lipids in small concentrations
What is the process of making guar gum?
It’s made in the same way as other vegetable gums: the endosperm of the seeds is milled.
Heat treatment is used to separate the endosperm from the husk and germ during the production process. The endosperm was then processed to get the required mesh size of guar gum.
The seed’s makeup is as follows:
· On the outside, there is a husk (16-18%). (43-46 percent)
· The endosperm (34-40 percent)
It can be refined even further by dissolving it in water, precipitating it, and then recovering it using ethanol or isopropanol. Guar gum that has been cleared (purified, removed) is what it is called. Clarified guar gum is a type of guar gum that is free of cell walls and is usually standardized with sugars on the market.
In industrial processing of guar gum extrusion is also included before hydration and flaking. After these steps grinding and drying are done. Inclusion of extrusion gives guar gum powder with improved hydration rate. The byproducts of the guar gum industry are Churi and Korma which are utilized for cattle feed (1).
Guar gum comes in three varieties.
Based on the various production methods, it may be divided into three types.
Apart from the two varieties of guar gum stated above, the common type and clarified guar gum, there is a third variety known as partially hydrolyzed guar gum, which is partially hydrolyzed by heat, mild acid, or alkaline oxidative treatment for viscosity modification.
Guar gum is one of the most inexpensive hydrocolloids used in food, such as ice cream, frozen desserts, baked goods, dairy products, and beverages. It’s a multi-functional component with benefits like water retention, dietary fiber, calorie reduction, ice crystal formation improvement, and rheological property management.
It is used in meat products. Guar gum has strong water holding capacity in both hot and cold water. Hence, it is very effectively used as a binder and lubricant in the manufacturing of sausage products and stuffed meat products. It performs specific functions in processed meat products like syneresis control, prevention of fat migration during storage, viscosity control of liquid phase during processing and cooling and control of accumulation of the water in the can during storage (1).
Guar gum is used as a binder and stabilizer in the production of ice cream. Its ability to rapidly hydrate in cold water makes it an excellent ice cream stabilizer, particularly in high-temperature, short-time operations, such as at 80°C for 20–30 seconds. Guar gum, at 0.2 percent, can be used to make high-quality ice cream.
It produces a dry, hard ice cream with a delayed meltdown when combined with calcium sulfate. It’s also used as a stabilizer in ice cream mixes alongside sodium hexametaphosphate and sodium citrate. Guar gum should be used in ice cream mix at a concentration level of 0.3%. Guar gum in ice cream improves the body, texture, chewiness and heat shock resistance (1).
What is the purpose of guar gum in ice cream?
· Prevent crystal formation and provide body, texture, and creaminess.
· Increase stiffness by adding fiber and reducing fat.
· Reduces the production of crystals and allows for a more gradual and uniform meltdown.
· Lactose crystallization and shrinkage should be avoided during storage.
It boosts dough yield and adds a fiber supplement to baked goods, as well as giving them a softer texture and a longer shelf life. For example, in bread. In wheat bread dough, addition of guar gum results in significant increase in loaf volume on baking. Guar gum along with xanthan gum retard staling in gluten-free rice cakes by decreasing the weight loss and retrogradation enthalpy. Similarly, guar gum also retards staling in chapati at room temperature as well as refrigerated temperature by controlling retrogradation of starch (1).
Salads & Sauces
Because of its high viscosity, acid stability, and cold water solubility, it acts as a thickening agent. Guar gum enhances the consistency of tomato ketchup more prominently than other hydrocolloids like carboxymethyl cellulose, Sodium alginate, gum acacia and pectin. In addition to guar gum serum loss and flow values of tomato ketchup decreases which makes it a novel thickener for tomato ketchup (1).
Milk and Dairy Products
It thickens milk, yogurt, and pudding, among other dairy products. It increases texture, viscosity, and color consistency. For example, in coconut milk, stabilize it and make it smooth and creamy. Partially hydrolyzed guar gum (at 2–6% concentration level) decreases syneresis and improves the textural and rheological properties of low fat yogurt comparable with full-fat yogurt (1).
As a viscosity control agent and calorie reducer in low-calorie beverages. Guar gum is used in beverages for thickening and viscosity control because of its several inherent properties. The important property of guar gum is its resistance to breakdown under low pH conditions present in beverages (1).
Food for pets
It’s commonly found on the labels of dog and cat foods. It primarily functions as a stabilizer, and the FDA has approved its usage in animals.
Guar gum can be used as a binding, emulsion stabilizing, film-forming, masking, and viscosity controlling agent in cosmetic and personal care products, according to the “European Commission database for information on cosmetic chemicals and components.” High solubility in hot as well as cold water, solvent resistant film forming tendency, protective colloid, high viscosity, extensive pH resistance range, stability, non-toxic nature, safe and cheaper prices etc, makes guar gum useful for cosmetic applications (2).
It is utilized as an excipient in the pharmaceutical industry for its dissolving, binding, viscosity-enhancing, and thickening capabilities. It is, for example, used to improve the cohesiveness of medication powder before it is formed into tablets.
Presence of a large number of hydroxyl groups in the structure of guar gum make them suitable for various chemical reactions. It has been extensively employed for drug delivery applications due to its high swelling characteristics which can easily be modified by grafting and derivatization. In tablet dosage form, guar gum and its derivatives are extensively used as binder and disintegrating agent providing cohesive nature to the drug (2).
Nutritional therapy in clinical practice
Guar gum that has been partially hydrolyzed (a form with lower viscosity, perhaps 10-fold lower) is a water-soluble dietary fiber that has a wide range of applications in clinical nutrition. It may help to lessen the occurrence of diarrhea in people suffering from irritable bowel syndrome. With hydrolyzed guar gum it is possible to increase the dietary fiber content of various food products like beverages without disturbing the nutritional and sensory properties of the food products (1).
Some bulk-forming laxatives have this as a key component. Oil drilling and mining, textiles, explosives, and the paper industry are some of the other industries that use it. Guar gum acts as water soluble and bulk forming laxative fiber. It is effective in promoting regular bowel movements, relieving constipation, Crohn’s disease, diverticulosis, irritable bowel syndrome and colitis, etc (2).
Other FAQs about Vegans that you may be interested in.
In this brief guide, we answered the query, “Is e412 vegan?” and discussed the composition and uses of e412.
- Mudgil, D., Barak, S. & Khatkar, B.S. Guar gum: processing, properties and food applications—A Review. J Food Sci Technol, 2014, 51, 409–418.
- Sharma, Gaurav, et al. Guar gum and its composites as potential materials for diverse applications: A review. Carbohydr polym, 2018, 199, 534-545.