The Application of High-Speed Decanter Centrifuge in Protein Extraction

The Classification of Proteins

Proteins can be divided into plant and animal proteins.

Plant proteins are an important source of dietary protein for humans. Cereals generally contain 6-10% protein. Potatoes contain 2%-3% protein. Certain nuts such as peanuts, walnuts, almonds, and lotus seeds contain high levels of protein (15-30%). Legumes such as certain dried beans can contain up to about 40% protein. Soybeans in particular are more prominent among legumes. Soybeans are rich in high-quality protein and are a good source of protein for human food.

Generally speaking, plant and animal proteins are not very different, but they differ in amino acid composition and quantity. Animal proteins contain more of the three branched-chain amino acids (BCAAs) - leucine, isoleucine, and valine - as well as the sulfur-containing amino acids cysteine and methionine.

The Comparisons are as Follows:
Protein Type Animal Protein Plant Protein
Pros 1. Higher bioavailability and more effective absorption

2. Provide certain vitamins (such as A, B12, D, and K2), minerals (such as zinc, sodium, and chloride), and other beneficial nutrients such as L-carnitine and choline (especially eggs)
1. Provide phytochemicals and plant fiber

2. Provide more certain vitamins and minerals (especially copper, magnesium, and manganese)

3. Provide alkalinity (good for bone health)

4. A reduced absorption rate of iron (reducing the burden of excess iron)
Cons 1. Acid burden

2. Iron burden

3. Activate more IGF-1 (Pro-growth, Pro-aging, and carcinogenesis)
1. Less activation of IGF-1

2. Maybe deficient in certain essential amino acids

Enormous Opportunities Lie with Plant Protein

According to the website of the Spanish newspaper El País, the world's consumption of animal protein is increasing every year. This consumption is contrary to sustainable development. Western society's obsession with red meat and milk over the years has forced the food industry to look for new alternatives to strike a balance between meeting human needs and protecting the environment. The vegetable protein industry comes as a major trend.

Although animal protein can be absorbed easier and contains essential amino acids, it contains saturated fatty acids. Saturated fatty acids have bad effects on angiocarpy and may increase the risk of coronary heart disease if consumed in excess. Meanwhile, the livestock industry has become the producer of 14.5% of the world's greenhouse gases, already more than the transportation industry, so many European countries have also begun to consider environmental taxes on meat consumption.

Due to the high cost of animal protein, many people are looking to plant proteins as alternatives, and soy is the obvious choice. The soybean market is expected to expand significantly by 2025. United Bank of Switzerland (UBS) expects the plant protein market to grow rapidly over the next decade. By 2030, the global plant protein market will soar from $4.6 billion today to $85 billion, while the broader agri-tech market is expected to expand more than five times in size.

How to Extract Soybean Protein

The most common methods for separating target proteins from non-protein impurities and non-target proteins are the acid precipitation base method, enzyme extraction method, organic solvent extraction method, salt extraction method, and reverse micelle extraction method. The acid precipitation base method is used most.

In producing protein powder, to improve the production efficiency and extraction rate as much as possible, ZK food-grade high-speed protein centrifuges (separation factor ≥ 3500G) are more and more applied to the production process line, playing an increasingly important role in the production process

This kind of fully enclosed high-speed centrifuges with high efficiency are gradually causing technological innovations in soy product production lines and are replacing traditional filter-type equipment.

Process Details:
  1. ZK SEPARATION zkcentrifuge.com