Sucrose is either freeze dried from an aqueous solutions or ball-milled and a low level of citric acid is introduced and very intimately mixed at the same time. The resultant mix melts at temperatures much lower than pure sucrose and heat treatment of the resultant anhydrous melts can be controlled to produce a variety of products which are likely to find applications as food and animal feed additives. Examples of heating regimes and product use are as follows: (a) Kestoses are produced at 100-degrees-C/80 minutes. These have been shown, e.g. when added to the regular diet of chickens, to result in major increases in beneficial Lactobacilli and Bifidobacteria in the cecum. (b) A particular type of caramel is produced at 145-147-degrees-C/7 minutes, which we designate as sucrose thermal oligosaccharide caramel (STOC). This contains about 50% of oligosaccharides which contain a high proportion of fructose. When this caramel is added at relatively low levels to the diet of chickens, similar effects on beneficial cecal bacteria are observed to those described in (a). It also caused a major increase in growth rate and significant improvement in feed conversion. Similar trials are underway with other domestic animals. (c) At 170-degrees-C/80 minutes a polysaccharide is produced which contains both fructose and glucose. This product has very similar structure to existing glucose-only polysaccharides such as Polydextrose(R), which finds extensive use as a food bulking agent. The same process simultaneously produces oligosaccharides which are expected to have similar uses to the STOC in (b).
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