Meat + Poultry - July 2010 - 72

Food Ingredient Solutions

(Photo courtesy of Ajinomoto Food Ingredients LLC)

Binding
perfection
Attributes define the
most sought-after binders
BY BRYAN SALVAGE
bsalvage@sosland.com

eat and poultry processors have
a wide range of binding ingredients to choose from when formulating new or reformulating existing
value-added products. But many insist on using binders that are convenient, user-friendly, offer a clean label

M

"Having a binder that is
easy to use is important,
as is having good binding
strength and range of
product applications."
product and most importantly - provide extraordinary performance and
good binding strength.
"We find the most desirable features
of binders revolve around how useful
they are and how easily they can be
incorporated into their system," says
William Fields, manager of business
development and application innova-

tion with Ajinomoto Food Ingredients
LLC, who is based in Ames, Iowa.
"Having a binder that is easy to use is
important, as is having good binding
strength and range of product applications. Labeling and allergen status
can also play a role, but if the product
doesn't perform well, it really doesn't
matter if it is clean label or not."
Introduced a few years ago, Ajinomoto's ACTIVA GS was a breakthrough binding ingredient, allowing
processors to have a long application
window yet delivering a very strong
bond, says Dr. Joseph Formanek, associate director of business development and application innovation, also
with Ajinomoto Food Ingredients and
based in Chicago. "The active component of ACTIVA GS, as it is for all of
our ACTIVA products, is transglutaminase," he adds. "Transglutaminase
crosslinks glutamine and lysine amino

72 * Meat&Poultry * July 2010 * www.MeatPoultry.com

acid residues in proteins such as those
found in meat products. This reaction
can be very quick and, in certain circumstances, can cause issues where
the reaction occurs too early in the
application process."
ACTIVA GS contains ingredients
that inhibit the bonding reaction until
after the material has been applied onto
the surfaces to be bonded. All of the ingredients that make up ACTIVA GS
are USDA-approved for use in a wide
range of meat products.
Benjamin Ruther, associate scientist,
Ajinomoto Food Ingredients, Ames,
Iowa, says some major issues processors can experience when working with
binders include binder incompatibility
with existing equipment, microbial control in comminuted products and lack
of binder handling knowledge.
"ACTIVA GS works well despite
these concerns because it fits well in
most production-bonding scenarios and maintains its bond strength
even when typical antimicrobial and
antioxidant agents are added into the
system," Ruther says. "We also have
an expert team at our Ames, Iowa facility that assists our customers with
any handling issues that may arise."

Savvy solutions
Rick Cassidy, vice president of product development with BindMax Proteins, New Berlin, Wis., says features
meat and poultry processors look for
and questions they might ask about a
meat binding agent may include:
* Functionality/ effectiveness - How
much water does it bind?
* Compatibility with other ingredients
in the meat formula.
* Is it non-allergenic?
* Production efficiency - Will the binder selected require equipment cleanup before the next production batch?
* Features an ingredient name that is
label-friendly to consumers.
* Does the ingredient qualify for
USDA "natural" and/or "organic"?
* What is the ingredient's cost per lb.?
* How much does the ingredient improve the cook yield?


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Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Meat + Poultry - July 2010

Contents
Meat + Poultry - July 2010 - 1
Meat + Poultry - July 2010 - 2
Meat + Poultry - July 2010 - 3
Meat + Poultry - July 2010 - Contents
Meat + Poultry - July 2010 - 5
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