Allyl isothiocyanate (AITC) is a well-recognized antimicrobial agent but, application of AITC to food systems is limited due to its high volatility and strong odor. This study was performed to overcome the volatility of AITC by encapsulation using gum Arabic and chitosan and to investigate the effect of microencapsulated AITC as a natural additive on the shelf-life and quality of Kimchi. AITC loaded microparticles were prepared using gum Arabic and chitosan and were added to Kimchi at various concentrations (0-0.02%, w/w). The titratable acidity, pH, microbial changes, and sensory test of Kimchi were examined for 15days at different fermentation temperatures (4 and 10°C). The pH of Kimchi containing AITC microparticles was significantly higher than that of control and the higher the quantity of added AITC, the higher the pH became. The titratable acidity of Kimchi increased during storage especially, titratable acidity of control increased significantly higher than those of Kimchi with added AITC microparticles. The number of Leuconostoc and Lactobacillus species in Kimchi decreased with an increase in the concentration of AITC. The addition of AITC induced reduction of sour taste and improvement of the texture of Kimchi during fermentation. However, as the content of AITC increased, the scores of overall acceptability decreased due to the odor of AITC. These results indicate that addition of AITC (less than 0.1%) to Kimchi is an effective way of enhancing the shelf-life of Kimchi without reducing quality.
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