Physicochemical Aspects of an Emulsifier Function

  • Björn Bergenståhl
  • Patrick T. SpicerEmail author


Food emulsions are complex formulations developed with many success criteria, including stability, safety, taste, and process feasibility. A key component of all these attributes is the correct choice of one, or multiple, emulsifiers that are compatible with all ingredients, food regulations, and the above criteria. The physical chemistry of emulsifiers in foods determines their efficiency and performance in a given formulation, and this chapter provides an overview of the surface properties of these materials and their phase behavior. Examples are provided for the main classes of food emulsifiers, enabling researchers and practitioners in food research, development, and processing to choose and apply these materials.


Adsorption Emulsion Surfactant Emulsifier Phospholipid Micelle Droplet Liquid crystal Stability Viscosity Lecithin Gel Tween Span Interfacial tension Shear 


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© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Food TechnologyLund UniversityLundSweden
  2. 2.School of Chemical EngineeringUNSW SydneySydneyAustralia

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