Using Bruker's minispec System for R&D and QC in the Chocolate Field

The Fat and Chocolate industries have been using the Bruker minispec for many years to make an accurate and reliable determination of fat melting profiles based on the Solid Fat Content (SFC) Determination — an indispensable process to ensure the required fat properties.

The SFC method is more than an application of TD-NMR. It is a popular and well-established International Standard method. The minispec system can run indirect and/or Solid Echo methods, in addition to the extensive so-called direct SFC methodology.

Equally important is precise and reliable determination of the Total Fat content present in chocolate samples. The minispec system provides a turn-key approach together with simple calibration. For fat content calibration, TD-NMR can use pure cocoa butter or alternatively 3 to 5 real chocolate samples can be considered to calibrate the instrument.

Chocolate liquors and inter­mediate products containing iron content can be easily determined for Total Fat. This can be achieved with Bruker’s pro­prietary solution which considers the effect of the iron on the TD-NMR signals. It takes just two minutes to perform calibration.

SFC Determination by Direct SFC Method. Solid and liquid parts clearly exhibit different relaxation behavior. Due to dipolar coupling the solid fraction decays very quickly.

SFC Determination by Direct SFC Method. Solid and liquid parts clearly exhibit different relaxation behavior. Due to dipolar coupling the solid fraction decays very quickly.

Bruker SFC Calibration Standards for a Pre-calibrated minispec SFC Analyzer. The samples are delivered together with a certificate, which is valid for 2 years.

Bruker SFC Calibration Standards for a Pre-calibrated minispec SFC Analyzer. The samples are delivered together with a certificate, which is valid for 2 years.

Calibration Curve for Analysis of Total Fat in Chocolate Samples. Different amounts of pure cocoa butter can be used to calibrate the minispec system.

Calibration Curve for Analysis of Total Fat in Chocolate Samples. Different amounts of pure cocoa butter can be used to calibrate the minispec system.

Of late, SFC determination in chocolates has attracted a great deal of interest across the world. Based on Bruker’s TD-NMR minispec method, major customers have already launched this calibration-free method successfully. This novel method is based on the so-called indirect SFC method since the solid fraction of the sample also contains components besides fat.

Key minispec TD-NMR Applications

  • SFC analysis in fat compositions (ISO, IUPAC, AOCS, International Standard Methods)
  • SFC in chocolate products
  • Total fat content in cacao powder
  • Total fat content in chocolate
  • Total fat content in cacao beans
  • Total fat content in chocolate liquor

R&D Applications

  • Droplet size analysis in emulsions
  • Investigation of fat crystal structures
  • 1D profiling of chocolate samples, for example, analysis of fat migration and bloom

Applications in Research and Development

The non-destructive TD-NMR relaxometry method can be used to perform studies on the crystallization behavior of fats like triglyceride blends. TD-NMR provides data that could only be accessed by X-ray technologies. TD-NMR gradient experiments similar to MRI are used extensively but these can also be applied to specific applications in the chocolate field.

  • Droplet size distributions in water in both oil and oil in water emulsions are accessible by minispec Pulsed Field Gradient sequences
  • 1-dimensional gradients have been employed to obtain sample profiles, for example to study fat migration and bloom

Simple Calibration of the minispec

QC Applications
Solid fat content in fat composition Calibration samples are provided by Bruker with a certificate
Solid fat content in chocolate calibration-free
Total fat content in chocolate Calibration with pure cocoa butter
Total fat content in cacao powder Calibration with pure cocoa butter
Total fat content in chocolate liquor Pure cocoa butter plus 5 liquor samples with known fat content
Total fat content in cacao beans Calibration with pure cocoa butter
R&D Applications
Water droplet size method calibration-free
Oil droplet size method calibration-free
1d - Profiling in x or y direction calibration-free
Fat crystal structure calibration-free

 

Key Advantages of the minispec

  • Calibration-free respec­tively simple calibration
  • Conforms to International Standard Methods
  • Integral TD-NMR measurement possible even in case of inhomogenous samples or if fat separates or migrates
  • Samples are determined as-is, no sample preparation required
  • Rapid analysis, takes just a few seconds
  • Complete screening of the sample - the surface as well as each hydro­gen nuclei within the sample are analyzed
  • Non-destructive method
  • Turn-key method, easy-to-learn and use
  • Easy and intuitive minispec software
  • Operator requires no special skills
  • Long-term reliable and problem-free operation
  • A wide range of NMR probes is available to suit specific requirements of customers

About Bruker BioSpin - NMR, EPR and Imaging

Bruker BioSpin offers the world's most comprehensive range of NMR and EPR spectroscopy and preclinical research tools. Bruker BioSpin develops, manufactures and supplies technology to research establishments, commercial enterprises and multi-national corporations across countless industries and fields of expertise.


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Last updated: May 3, 2019 at 3:10 AM

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