The stout has more iron thanblonde

The stout has more iron than the blonde

5:19 PM, 12th August 2011
The stout has more iron than the blonde
The dark beers contain 121 ppb of free iron compared to 92 ppb of blondes. (c) SINC.


VALLADOLID, SPAIN: A team of researchers from the University of Valladolid has analyzed 40 brands of beer and found that dark beers have a higher amount of free iron that blondes and without alcohol. Iron, as well as being an essential element in the human diet, helps to oxidize organic compounds that provide stability and flavour these beverages.

The dark beers contain an average amount of free iron from 121 ppb (parts per billion) compared to 92 ppb and 63 blondes ppb of no alcohol, according to an analysis of 40 beers from five continents by researchers University of Valladolid (UVa).

“Although the amounts are very small variations are clear, and might result from production processes or raw materials used during manufacturing,” pointed out to SINC Carlos Blanco, Professor of Food Technology at UVa and Co-author.

The study, published by the Journal of the Science of Food and Agriculture, said that extracts of malt and hops that are used specifically in the production of dark beer could explain their higher levels of iron.

However, the production of lager filtering is done with ‘diatomite’ (microalgae sedimentary rock used to clarify the drink), a porous material that traps the metal and reduces its concentration.

In the case of non-alcoholic beers apply vacuum evaporation process to remove the alcohol. This operation also favored the removal of iron ions by the drag exerted by the volatile molecules.

To do the work we have analyzed 17 brands of beer manufactured in Spain and 23 other countries, 28 in particular blonde, six black and many other non-alcoholic. Those containing more iron have been a stout Spanish (165 ppb) and a Mexican (130 ppb) and those least two alcohol-free from the Netherlands and Ireland (41 and 47 ppb respectively).

The determination of iron and other metals in beer is important not only because it is essential to the human body, also through their involvement in the preparation of the drink. The concentrations of metals may determine its organoleptic characteristics, stability and quality.

With this work, researchers have validated the technique developed to analyze the iron (called ‘cyclic voltammetry adsorptive differential pulse’), a method of “Ultrasensitive, selective, fast, reliable and cheap.” Recently the team has also applied for the first time an “Electronic tongue” to quantify the degree of bitterness and alcohol beers.

Sancho, Daniel Blanco, Carlos A, Caballero, Isabel Pascual, Ana contributed to the research, “Free iron in pale, dark and alcohol-free commercial lager beers.”

© University of Valladolid News




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