Bridging the Gap Between Starch Granule Architecture, Molecular Structure, and Reactivity
Starch represents the second greatest biomass on the planet and a superb source of functional biopolymers. Annual world production of isolated starch for food/industrial markets climbed to 60 million tons in 2004, with 59% isolated in the U.S. The majority of starch utilized in food applications is first modified chemically to improve its properties in accordance with the intended function. Though chemical modification is important industrially, starch reactivity is complex and not fully understood. A more comprehensive understanding of relationships between reaction conditions, starch reactivity, and their link to modified starch properties, is key to maximizing starch utilization and development of value-added products. This study will investigate relationships and factors that influence starch granule reactivity to better understand the
conditions required to produce quality, value-added starches. Knowledge resulting from this research has the potential to enable development of strategies to produce starch products with improved or novel properties for production of better and more competitive products for current and emerging critical needs.