Comparative evaluation of irradiated and non-irradiated expeller-pressed virgin coconut oil for the design of novel functional antioxidant-rich non-carbonated ready-to-serve and dry beverages
Keywords:Coconut oil, Gamma irradiation, Beverage, Antioxidant potency, Shelf life
AbstractExpeller-pressed virgin coconut oil was subjected to 0–10 kGy gamma irradiation for removal of its rancid-acid odour as judged by sensory evaluation and electronic nose systems. The optimized dose for the removal of the rancid-acid odour was 4.2 kGy. The oil was then blended with green tea extract (3:1 w/w) to produce a novel antioxidant-rich non-carbonated ready-to-serve (RTS) still beverage, which was evaluated against a control beverage prepared with non-irradiated oil. The beverages were stored at 4°C and 23°C and periodically assayed for microbial growth, sensory attributes and physiochemical and phytochemical properties. The beverage containing irradiated coconut oil had a shelf life of 13 days at 4°C. Microencapsulation of this RTS beverage produced a ‘dry beverage’ with appreciable phytochemical properties and a 29-times longer half-life compared to the RTS beverage. The reconstitution ratio of this beverage in water was 1:5 w/w. This is the first report of an oil-based beverage and describes a unique application for expeller-pressed virgin coconut oil. The antioxidant-rich RTS and dry beverages designed in this study could be promising novel health drinks for the beverage industry.