11:00 am - 12:00 pm
849 General Services Building (GSB), General Services Building, University of Alberta, Edmonton AB
A graduate exam seminar is a presentation of the student’s final research project for their degree.
This is an ALES MSc Seminar by Katya Schole. This seminar is open to the general public to attend.
Thesis Topic: Development and characterization of a novel plant-based functional beverage
MSc with Dr. Thava Vasanthan.
Over the last 10 years, more and more consumers have been opting for foods and beverages that are both convenient and functional. As a result, consumer demand for plant-based foods and beverages has been increasing dramatically. Nonetheless, there is still a niche gap in this market that has yet to be filled. Typical plant-based beverages are sweetened with added sugars or artificial sweeteners and are low in fibre and protein due to the nature of their raw materials. This study aimed to develop an oat (Avena sativa) and field pea (Pisum sativum) protein beverage that is naturally sweetened, high in protein, and high in beta-glucan (a dietary fibre shown to reduce blood cholesterol levels, improve satiety, and reduce post-prandial blood glucose spikes). A reliable method was developed to naturally sweeten the oat beverage using barley malt enzymes while leaving beta-glucan intact (2.3% beta-glucan). The resulting beverage was mildly sweet with relatively low glucose (0.15%) and maltose (1.9%) levels. Unfortunately, the procedure did not optimize protein solubility and the resulting beverage showed a low protein content (1.025%). However, this low protein content could easily be corrected by either reducing the centrifugation parameters or adding the protein isolate after the final centrifugation step. The final oat beverage had several desirable attributes such as a low viscosity, an off-white color, and a mild odor. Overall, with minor corrections to the procedure and with the addition of flavourings, this procedure can produce an excellent plant-based health beverage.