Saturday, February 18, 2023

History of xanthan gum

Xanthan gum a polysaccharide synthesized by bacteria, is a hydrocolloid that stabilizes and thickens foods produced by the microorganism Xanthomonas campestris and consists of glucose, mannose and glucuronic acid.

Xanthan gum stabilizes foods, helping certain foods withstand different temperatures and pH levels. Additionally, it prevents foods from separating and allows them to flow smoothly out of their containers.

Xanthan gum was discovered by American carbohydrate chemist, Allene Rosalind Jeanes and her research team in 1960s at the United States Department of Agriculture and was commercialized in 1970s. Xanthan gum was first marketed under the name Kelzan, an industrial-grade version of the product.

Xanthan gum first received U.S Food and Drug Administration full food additive approval in 1969. Kelco (now CP Kelco) petitioned xanthan gum to be added to the food additive list. The approval was based on a full safety assessment by the US FDA.

Approved by the FDA in 1968, xanthan gum is widely used as a food thickener, stabilizer, and emulsifier in products such as toothpaste, egg substitutes, ice cream, and some gluten-free foods.

Xanthan gum is accepted as a safe food additive in the USA, Canada, European countries, and many other countries, with E number E415, and CAS number 11138-66-2.
History of xanthan gum