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Other biological topics
The peels of processed apples can be recovered for further food applications. Limited information on the valorisation of this type of waste is available for cooking varieties, e.g. cv Bramley’s Seedling. Extracts from fresh or dried (oven-dried or freeze-dried) peels were obtained with solvents of different polarity (aqueous acetone or ethanol) and assayed for their total phenolic content and antioxidant capacity; their antiradical power was compared to herb extracts. The dried peels were also characterised as bulk powders by assessing their nutritional value and total phenolic content. High amounts of ascorbic acid (up to 4 mg/g, dry weight) and polyphenols (up to 27 mg gallic acid equivalents/g, dry weight) were found in the peels, with the latter contributing significantly to the antioxidant capacity; the nutrient profile was low in 2 protein (less than 10%, w/w) and total dietary fibre content (less than 40%, w/w). Higher yields of phenolic antioxidants were recovered with acetone from freeze-dried peels; the resulting extracts had equivalent antioxidant power to oregano leaves (Origanum vulgare L.). The combination of oven-drying/ethanol led to lower recovery yields of phenolic antioxidants; however, these conditions could increase the feasibility of the extraction process, leading to antioxidant extracts with lower energy or cost input, and higher suitability for further food use. The recovery of phenolic antioxidants from the peels of processed apples could be a valuable alternative to traditional disposal routes (including landfill), in particular for cooking varieties. The recycling process could enhance the growth of traditional culinary apple markets in UK and Ireland thanks to the new business opportunities for the peel-derived materials.
Massini, L., Rico, D., Martin-Diana, A., Barry-Ryan, C.: Valorisation of Apple Peels. European Journal of Food Research and Review, vol. 3 (1), 2013, p.1-15. doi:10.21427/D7R32T