The composition of margarine

Many manufacturing companies like to position margarine made by them as a high-quality food product, a full-fledged substitute for real butter, similar to its taste, smell, appearance and texture, but less caloric and more healthy. Claiming all this for promotional purposes, they are certainly cunning. The chemical composition of natural cow butter and the composition of margarine is drastically different and their nutritional and consumer value are simply incomparable. Therefore, in Russia it is prohibited by law to write the word “butter” on packages of margarine in any combination, so as not to mislead the consumer.

Before telling you more about what margarine is made of, I would like to devote a few words to the history of its appearance on our tables.

Historical reference

It all began in the middle of the nineteenth century, when the emperor of France, Napoleon the third, promised a reward to anyone who could create a substitute for natural butter to meet the growing needs of the French army.Chemists enthusiastically set to work and, already in 1871, a product called “margarine” was patented. Its composition at that time was extremely simple. Hydrogenated vegetable oils, tributyrin and water are the main components of the “grandfather” of all modern margarines and spreads. “What are modern margarine made of?” - you ask. Now we will try to answer this question in detail.

Raw materials for the production of margarine

There is a stable opinion among the people that all margarine is made from “oil”. Of course, all this is nothing more than a common misconception. In order to understand its fallacy, it is sufficient to simply study the corresponding GOST. Margarine, according to this standard, should be produced on the basis of vegetable oils and (or) fats of marine mammals and fish. Also in the production of margarine allowed the use of animal fats and dairy products.

Margarine classification

GOST divides all margarine produced into three large groups. The first group includes all solid margarines. They are refractory, unpainted, contain many animal fats.Solid margarines are intended mainly for confectionery and bakery production.

Soft margarines are familiar to us all, similar in taste and color to butter, intended for use in home cooking or spreading on bread and direct consumption.

Liquid margarines are intended for frying various products at home or in catering establishments.

The main composition of margarine

Margarine is a water-oil emulsion with a fat content of at least 39% of the total mass.

The fatty constituent of margarine is mainly hydrogenated liquid vegetable oils and the liquid fats of marine mammals. Also, in smaller proportions, the margarine may include melted animal fats, milk fat and butter.

In addition to fats, margarine includes:

  • emulsifiers,
  • antioxidants
  • preservatives,
  • food colorings,
  • flavors,
  • salt and water.

In the production of margarine can be used products that improve its taste, such as:

  • milk,
  • milk serum,
  • dry or pasteurized cream,
  • sugar.

Sometimes manufacturers add vitamins A and E to margarine to increase its nutritional value.

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