Lactic Acid

Organic acid. It is white in the solid state and it is miscible with water.

Lactic Acid - ingreland
Lactic Acid - Ingreland

Lactic Acid

Organic acid. It is white in the solid state and it is miscible with water.

What is Lactic Acid?

Lactic acid is one of the most widely distributed acids in nature. It is a natural, weak,  organic acid associated with milk. The acid is odorless and has a mild taste which does not compromise or mask other flavors. 

Lactic acid is a type of organic acid that is produced by living organisms through a process called fermentation. It is a colorless, water-soluble liquid that has a mild acidic taste and is commonly used as a food and beverage additive. Lactic acid is also produced naturally in the human body during physical activity, where it helps to provide energy to the muscles.

Lactic acid is classified as an alpha-hydroxy acid (AHA) and is often used in cosmetic and personal care products as an exfoliant and moisturizer. It is also used as a preservative and flavor enhancer in food and beverage products.

Origin

When wheat flour is mixed with water, enzymes break down the dough to starches which the yeast and lactic acid bacteria, naturally present, can use to make acids and gases to leaven bread. Records indicate that around 4000 BC an Egyptian baker produced the first leavened sourdough bread. It was not until the 1850s that Louis Pasteur discovered the science behind leavened bread. The yeast that makes bread rise is Saccharomyces cerevisiae and the sourness is due to various lactobacilli bacteria which produce lactic and acetic acid.

Before Pasteur discovered the bacteria, Scheele discovered lactic acid in sour milk in 1780. In 1789, Lavoisier named this component “acide lactique,” the origin of the name lactic acid.

Commercial Production of Food Grade Lactic Acid

Lactic acid for food is produced either through chemical synthesis or fermentation. Commercial microbial fermentation utilizes homofermentative lactic acid bacteria that produce entirely lactic acid and not heterofermentative lactic acid bacteria which produce a blend of lactic acid, ethanol and CO(2). Fermentation takes place in large tanks called fermenters or bioreactors and can be classified as either batch, fed batch, repeated batch or continuous fermentation.

Function of Lactic Acid

Lactic acid functions to:

  • Lower pH, increase acidity
  • Enhance and add flavor
  • Increase shelf life by Inhibiting mold
  • As a substrate for producing dough conditioners Calcium and Sodium Stearoyl lactylate
  • Bioavailability enhancer for mineral fortification

Lactic Acid Application

Lactic acid has a wide range of applications in various industries. Here are some of the common applications of lactic acid:

  • Food and Beverage Industry: Lactic acid is used as a food additive to enhance the flavor, texture, and preservation of food products. It is also used as a natural preservative in food and beverages.
  • Personal Care Industry: Lactic acid is used in skin care products such as lotions, creams, and cleansers due to its exfoliating and moisturizing properties. It is also used in shampoos and conditioners to adjust the pH and improve the texture of hair.
  • Pharmaceutical Industry: Lactic acid is used as an excipient in pharmaceutical formulations to control the pH of the drug solution and improve its stability. It is also used in the production of lactates and other derivatives that are used in various medicinal applications.
  • Industrial Applications: Lactic acid is used in various industrial applications such as in the production of biodegradable polymers, solvents, and chemical intermediates. It is also used as a chiral building block for the synthesis of other chemicals.

Overall, lactic acid is a versatile chemical with a wide range of applications in different industries.

Product Range

  • Lactic Acid High-Pure 90%
  • Lactic Acid 88%
  • Lactic Acid 80%
  • Lactic Acid 60% Powder, Food Grad
  • Lactic Acid Feed Grade

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