Emulsifiers in Infant Nutritional Products

  • Séamus L. McSweeney

Infant nutritional products are specially formulated milks for babies and young children. These important nutritional products are available in several forms including convenient ready-to-feed liquid products, concentrated liquid products and powders that are reconstituted for consumption. The formation and stabilisation of an oil-in-water (o/w) emulsion is an integral step in the manufacture of all of these products; this is generally achieved by homogenising the oil phase, usually a blend of vegetable oils such as palm, coconut, soybean and sunflower oils, in an aqueous phase consisting mainly of carbohydrate, proteins, minerals and vitamins. The proteins together with low molecular weight food grade emulsifiers form a membrane that stabilises the oil droplets against coalescence.

This review will include some background information on the various types of nutritional products and before describing the role of emulsifiers in infant nutritional products, some background on the various production processes involved will be outlined, with emphasis on emulsion formation and stabilisation. The typical protein sources and low molecular weight emulsifiers available for use in these products will be considered in the context of the regulatory guidelines and restrictions. Finally, the functionality of emulsifiers, both protein and non-protein types, in the formation and stabilisation of emulsions will be discussed.


Whey Protein Milk Protein Infant Formula Skim Milk Powder Whey Protein Isolate 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • Séamus L. McSweeney
    • 1
  1. 1.Wyeth Nutrition, Inc.MiltonUSA

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