Consumers demand healthy and natural food products. Thus, naturally derived antioxidants are emerging as a promising alternative to the use of present ingredients. Apples and apple derivative products (e.g., apple juice, apple cider, apple sauce, and others) are widely consumed throughout the world for a variety of different reasons and supply a large quantity of polyphenolic compounds. The extraction of polyphenolic compounds from apples and their incorporation into processed foods as naturally sourced ingredients could be a preferred alternative to commonly used commercial antioxidants that are used in many foods. In addition, they could have a positive impact on the environment and on the economy due to the utilization of byproducts generated during processing of apples, like apple pomace. In terms of the extraction procedures for the antioxidant compounds found in apples, the most efficient processes are methods that use ultrasound as the extraction tool. With this technique, greater yields are achieved, and less extraction time is required when compared with other, more conventional, extraction methods. However, parameters such as the extraction solvent, temperature during extraction, and extraction time must be suitably optimized in order to obtain the best performance and the highest antioxidant capacity. From an application standpoint, the use of apple-derived polyphenol extracts as a naturally derived food additive has documented applications for bread, meat, fish, cookies, and juices and there is evidence of increased antioxidant capacity, reduced rate of lipid oxidation, and increased storage time without compromising on sensory properties.
Keywords: antioxidant; apple polyphenols; bioactive compound; extraction techniques; food additives; functional properties; plant extract.
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