Gum Arabic = Acacia Gum
CAS Number: 9000-01-5
EC Number: 232-519-5
E number: E414
Gum arabic, also known as gum sudani, acacia gum, Arabic gum, gum acacia, acacia, Senegal gum, Indian gum, and by other names, is a natural gum consisting of the hardened sap of two species of the acacia (sensu lato) tree, Acacia senegal (now known as Senegalia senegal) and Vachellia (Acacia) seyal.
The term "gum arabic" does not indicate a particular botanical source.
In a few cases, the so-called "gum arabic" may not even have been collected from acacia species, but may originate from Combretum, Albizia, or some other genus.
The gum is harvested commercially from wild trees, mostly in Sudan (80%) and throughout the Sahel, from Senegal to Somalia.
The name "gum Arabic" (al-samgh al-'arabi) was used in the Middle East at least as early as the 9th century.
Gum arabic first found its way to Europe via Arabic ports, so retained Gum arabics name.
Gum arabic is a complex mixture of glycoproteins and polysaccharides predominantly consisting of arabinose and galactose.
Gum arabic is soluble in water, edible, and used primarily in the food industry and soft-drink industry as a stabilizer, with E number E414 (I414 in the US).
Gum arabic is a key ingredient in traditional lithography and is used in printing, paint production, glue, cosmetics, and various industrial applications, including viscosity control in inks and in textile industries, though less expensive materials compete with it for many of these roles.
Uses of Gum arabic:
Gum arabic's mixture of polysaccharides and glycoproteins gives Gum arabic the properties of a glue and binder that is edible by humans.
Other substances have replaced Gum arabic where toxicity is not an issue, as the proportions of the various chemicals in gum arabic vary widely and make Gum arabic unpredictable.
Still, Gum arabic remains an important ingredient in soft drink syrup and "hard" gummy candies such as gumdrops, marshmallows, and M&M's chocolate candies.
For artists, Gum arabic is the traditional binder in watercolor paint and in photography for gum printing, and Gum arabic is used as a binder in pyrotechnic compositions.
Pharmaceutical drugs and cosmetics also use the gum as a binder, emulsifying agent, and a suspending or viscosity-increasing agent.
Wine makers have used gum arabic as a wine fining agent.
Gum arabic is an important ingredient in shoe polish, and can be used in making homemade incense cones.
Gum arabic is also used as a lickable adhesive, for example on postage stamps, envelopes, and cigarette papers.
Lithographic printers employ Gum arabic to keep the non-image areas of the plate receptive to water.
Gum arabic also helps to stop oxidation of aluminium printing plates in the interval between processing of the plate and its use on a printing press.
Gum arabic is used to make glazes harden and adhere to the ware (where they have insufficient clay percentages in the batch).
Normally only small amounts of gum are needed and they are put into the water before powder is added (typically a solution is prepared in hot water, then this added to the glaze batch before all its water has been added).
Gum arabic in Food
Gum arabic is used in the food industry as a stabilizer, emulsifier, and thickening agent in icing, fillings, soft candy, chewing gum, and other confectionery, and to bind the sweeteners and flavorings in soft drinks.
A solution of sugar and gum arabic in water, gomme syrup, is sometimes used in cocktails to prevent the sugar from crystallizing and provide a smooth texture.
Gum arabic is a complex polysaccharide and soluble dietary fibre that is generally recognized as safe for human consumption.
An indication of harmless flatulence occurs in some people taking large doses of 30 g or more per day.
Gum arabic is not degraded in the intestine, but fermented in the colon under the influence of microorganisms; Gum arabic is a prebiotic (as distinct from a probiotic).
No regulatory or scientific consensus has been reached about Gum arabics caloric value; an upper limit of 2 kcal/g was set for rats, but this is not valid for humans.
The US FDA initially set a value of 4 kcal/g for food labelling, but in Europe no value was assigned for soluble dietary fibre.
A 1998 review concluded that "based on present scientific knowledge, only an arbitrary value can be used for regulatory purposes".
In 2008, the USFDA sent a letter of no objection in response to an application to reduce the rated caloric value of gum arabic to 1.7 kcal/g.
Gum arabic in Painting and art
Gum arabic is used as a binder for watercolor painting because Gum arabic dissolves easily in water.
Pigment of any color is suspended within the acacia gum in varying amounts, resulting in watercolor paint.
Water acts as a vehicle or a diluent to thin the watercolor paint and helps to transfer the paint to a surface such as paper.
When all moisture evaporates, the acacia gum typically does not bind the pigment to the paper surface, but is totally absorbed by deeper layers.
If little water is used, after evaporation, the acacia gum functions as a true binder in a paint film, increasing luminosity and helping prevent the colors from lightening.
Gum arabic allows more subtle control over washes, because Gum arabic facilitates the dispersion of the pigment particles.
In addition, acacia gum slows evaporation of water, giving slightly longer working time.
The addition of a little gum arabic to watercolor pigment and water allows for easier lifting of pigment from paper, thus can be a useful tool when lifting out color when painting in watercolor.
Gum arabic in Ceramics
Gum arabic has a long history as additives to ceramic glazes.
Gum arabic acts as a binder, helping the glaze adhere to the clay before Gum arabic is fired, thereby minimising damage by handling during the manufacture of the piece.
As a secondary effect, Gum arabic also acts as a deflocculant, increasing the fluidity of the glaze mixture, but also making Gum arabic more likely to sediment out into a hard cake if not used for a while.
The gum is normally made up into a solution in hot water (typically 10–25 g/l), and then added to the glaze solution after any ball milling in concentrations from 0.02% to 3.0% of gum arabic to the dry weight of the glaze.
On firing, the gum burns out at a low temperature, leaving no residues in the glaze.
More recently, particularly in commercial manufacturing, gum arabic is often replaced by more refined and consistent alternatives, such as carboxymethyl cellulose.
Gum arabic in Photography
The historical photography process of gum bichromate photography uses gum arabic mixed with ammonium or potassium dichromate and pigment to create a coloured photographic emulsion that becomes relatively insoluble in water upon exposure to ultraviolet light.
In the final print, the acacia gum permanently binds the pigments onto the paper.
Gum arabic in Printmaking
Gum arabic is also used to protect and etch an image in lithographic processes, both from traditional stones and aluminum plates.
In lithography, gum by itself may be used to etch very light tones, such as those made with a number-five crayon.
Phosphoric, nitric, or tannic acid is added in varying concentrations to the acacia gum to etch the darker tones up to dark blacks.
The etching process creates a gum adsorb layer within the matrix that attracts water, ensuring that the oil-based ink does not stick to those areas.
Gum is also essential to what is sometimes called paper lithography, printing from an image created by a laser printer or photocopier.
Gum arabic in Pyrotechnics
Gum arabic is also used as a water-soluble binder in fireworks composition.
Gum arabic in Fuel charcoal
Gum arabic is used as a binding agent in the making of fuel charcoal.
Charcoal made from the taifa plant is powdery, and so in order to form charcoal cakes, gum arabic is mixed with this powder and allowed to dry.
Fuel charcoal made from taifa and gum arabic is used for cooking fires in Senegal and a few other African countries.
Gum arabic composition
Arabinogalactan is a biopolymer consisting of arabinose and galactose monosaccharides.
Gum arabic is a major component of many plant gums, including gum arabic.
8-5' Noncyclic diferulic acid has been identified as covalently linked to carbohydrate moieties of the arabinogalactan-protein fraction.
Gum Arabic, also known as Gum Acacia, is a tree gum exudate that has been an important commercial ingredient since ancient times.
The Egyptians used Gum arabic for embalming mummies, and for making paints for hieroglyphic inscriptions.
However, in recent years, a renewed interest in Gum Arabic has occurred, as more articles are published concerning Gum arabics structure, properties, and novel applications in food and pharmaceuticals.
Gum Arabic is a tree exudate that is obtained mainly from the Acacia Senegal or Acacia Seyal species.
The trees grow widely across the Sahelian belt of Africa, a region of Africa is a 3,860-kilometre arc-like land mass immediately south of the Sahara Desert that stretches east-west from Senegal in the west to Somalia in the east.
Gum Arabic is the resin that oozes from the stems and branches of trees.
Production of Gum Arabic or Gum Acacia is stimulated by `tapping,’ which involves removing sections of the bark, taking care not to damage the tree.
The sticky, gummy substance dries on the branches to form hard nodules which are picked by hand and are sorted according to color and size.
Other names: Gum arabic (Acacia senegal) Gum hashab, kordofan gum, Gum arabic (Acacia seyal) Gum talha, Acacia gum, Arabic gum
Definition of Gum arabic:
Gum arabic was defined by the 31st Codex Committee for Food Additives, held at The Hague from 19 to 23 March 1999, as the dried exudate from the trunks and branches of Acacia senegal or Vachellia (Acacia) seyal in the family Fabaceae (Leguminosae).
A 2017 safety re-evaluation by the Panel on Food Additives and Nutrient Sources of the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) said that the term "gum arabic" does not indicate a particular botanical source; in a few cases, so‐called "gum arabic" may not even have been collected from Acacia species.
Gum Arabic is a rich source of dietary fibers and in addition to its widespread use in food and pharmaceutical industries as a safe thickener, emulsifier, and stabilizer, it also possesses a broad range of health benefits that have been evidently proved through several in vitro and in vivo studies.
Gum Arabic is not degraded in the stomach but fermented in the large intestine into a number of short chain fatty acids.
Gum arabic is regarded as a prebiotic that enhances the growth and proliferation of the beneficial intestinal microbiota and therefore Gum arabics intake is associated with many useful health effects.
These health benefits include
2-Anti-obesity (Gum Arabic lowers the body mass index and body fat percentage)
3-Lipid lowering potential (Gum Arabic decreases total cholesterol, LDL, and triglyceride)
5-Kidney and liver support
6-Immune function via modulating the release of some inflammatory mediators.
7-Prebiotics improve the intestinal barrier function, prevent colon cancer, and alleviate symptoms of irritable bowel diseases.
8-In rats, Gum Arabic supplementation showed a protective effect on the intestine against the adverse actions of the NSAID drug, Meloxicam.
What Is Gum Arabic?
Gum arabic, also sometimes called acacia gum or acacia powder, is a fibrous product made from the natural hardened sap of two types of wild Acacia trees.
Around the world, gum arabic goes by many names, including acacia gum, arabic gum, acacia powder, Senegal gum, Indian gum and others.
Acacia senegal (L.), a tree in the Leguminosae (Fabaceae) plant family, is most commonly used to make gum arabic products.
Vachellia (Acacia) is another species that produces a dried gum from Gum arabics trunk and branches.
These trees grow most abundantly in Sudan, where about 50 percent of the world’s gum arabic is now produced, but are also found in other parts of Africa, such as Kenya, Mali, Niger, Nigeria and Senegal.
What’s interesting about acacia trees is that they produce the most gum arabic when they experience “adverse conditions,” such as poor soil, drought or high heat.
This actually damages the trees to some degree but causes an increase in the production of arabic gum.
What type of organic molecule is gum arabic?
Gum arabic is made of a mixture of glycoproteins, a class of proteins that have carbohydrate groups attached to the polypeptide chain, and polysaccharides, a carbohydrate whose molecules consist of a number of sugar molecules bonded together.
Gum arabic also includes oligosaccharides, another type of carbohydrate.
Additionally, gums collected from acacia trees are a source of natural sugar compounds called arabinose and ribose, which were some of the first concentrated sugars to be derived from plants/trees.
The exact chemical composition of gum arabic varies from product to product, depending on Gum arabics source and the climate/soil conditions in which Gum arabic was grown.
Today, there are many industrial and food-related uses for gum arabic.
For example, gelatin, modified starch, gum arabic and pectin are the main types of gums used in many sugary/confectionery products.
Arabic gum is used to help stabilize products including:
-A wide variety of desserts and baking ingredients
-Dairy products like ice cream
-Hard and soft candies
-Ink, paint, watercolors, and photography and printing materials
-Ceramics and clay
-Stamps and envelopes
-Herbal medicines, pills and lozenges
-Emulsions that are applied to the skin
Chemical And Molecular Structure Of Gum Arabic
Gum arabic consists mainly of calcium, magnesium and potassium salts which yield arabinose, galactose, rhamnose, and glucuronic acid after hydrolysis.
Chemical compositions of Gum Arabic may vary slightly with the source, climate, season, and age of the tree.
Acacia Senegal and Acacia Seyal both contain the same carbohydrate residues.
However, Acacia Seyal gum has lower rhamnose and glucuronic acid contents, and higher arabinose and glucuronic acid contents than the gum derived from Acacia Senegal.
The amino acid compositions are similar in both gums, with hydroxyproline and serine being the major constituents.
Both gums from the Acacia and Acacia Seyal display similar features regarding high-weight molecular mass distributions.
However, the molecular mass of gum from Acacia Seyal is higher than the gum of Acacia Senegal, with an average molecular mass of 380,000 and 850,000, respectively.
Gum arabic is the gum that is exuded from certain trees, such as the Acacia senegal tree.
Gum arabic's a dietary fiber that can dissolve in water.
Gum arabic is used for high cholesterol, diabetes, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), and other conditions, but there is no good scientific evidence to support these uses.
In manufacturing, gum arabic is used as a pharmaceutical ingredient in medications for throat or stomachinflammation and as a film-forming agent in peel-off skin masks.
Don't confuse gum arabic with Acacia rigidula, acai, or cassie absolute (Acacia farnesiana).
How does Gum arabic work ?
Gum arabic is a source of dietary fiber.
Gum arabic tends to make people feel full, so they might stop eating earlier than they otherwise would.
This might lead to weight loss and reduced cholesterol levels.
Gum arabic’s structure allows Gum arabic to dissolve in cold or warm water (meaning Gum arabic’s “water-soluble”), making it easy to use in a variety of ways.
Because Gum arabic is a natural, plant-derived product, Gum arabic’s suitable for vegans/vegetarians (unlike other products with similar qualities, such as gelatin).
Gum arabic is also naturally gluten-free, usually non-GMO and well-tolerated by most people when used in appropriate/small amounts.
Gum Arabic Benefits:
Studies on both animals and humans suggest that benefits associated with gum arabic may include:
-Providing a source of prebiotics and soluble fiber.
-Feeding healthy bacteria (probiotics) in the gut.
-Helping enhance fullness and satiety.
-Helping with weight loss and potentially prevention of obesity.
-Treating IBS symptoms and constipation.
-Helping regulate cholesterol levels.
-Fighting insulin resistance, including in patients with type 2 diabetes.
-Reducing dental plaque on the gums and teeth, plus fighting gingivitis.
-Having anti-carcinogenic, anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects, thanks to Gum arabics tannins, flavonoids and resins.
-Helping reduce skin inflammation and redness.
Molecular Weight / Distance Benefit Prebiotics
The adult human gastrointestinal tract (GIT) is 9 meters (or 29.5 feet ) from the esophagus to the anus.
Gum arabic is important to note that short-chain, low molecular weight monosaccharides and disaccharides are more easily fermented proximally in the gastrointestinal tract than their more resistant and complex, higher molecular weight, oligosaccharide or polysaccharide counterparts.
While shorter-chain prebiotics can impart benefits, the large, slowly fermented polysaccharides of higher molecular weight have significant advantages over small, rapidly fermented sugars such as lactulose, and other non-digestible oligosaccharides.
These include the ability to be tolerated at higher doses by consumers with reduced risk of side effects such as intestinal discomfort and flatulence caused by excessive gas formation; mucosal damage from rapid acidification; or the laxative effect of too high concentrations of small sugars in the colon.
Perhaps more importantly, high-molecular weight polysaccharides supply a persistent source of fermentable carbohydrate throughout the length of the colon rather than being completely fermented proximally.
This fact may be of particular interest in the prevention of certain types of diseases, like colon cancer, as the distal colon and rectum are significant sites of inflammation and disease in humans
Gum arabics General description
Gum arabic from acacia tree is extracted from the branches of Acacia senegal and Acacia seyal trees.
Gum arabic is an edible dried gummy exudate.
Gum Arabic has high solubility and is used in food industry as a stabilizer, emulsifier, flavouring agent, thickener and surface-finishing agent.
Gum arabic initiates turbidity or hinders sugar crystallization.
Gum arabic inhibits color pigmentation and protein precipitation in wine production.
Gum arabic Application
-Gum arabic from acacia tree has been used:
-as an emulsifying agent to determine lipase activity in shrimps
-for the visualization of mossy fiber sprouting
-as an immunogen and for coating microtitre wells in plate-trapped antigen ELISAs (PTA-ELISAs)
-for silver enhancement for immunohistochemistry
-as a component for Timm′s staining solution
-in nitrocellulose-based soil adhesion assay
-to separate few-layer graphene (FLG) from bulk graphite layers
What is Acacia Gum?
Acacia gum or gum arabic is a food grade, naturally-derived gum used for its emulsifying and high-gloss properties.
In baking, it:
-Acts as a stabilizer
-Has many clean-label attributes
-Is calorie-free, grown without pesticides, and both kosher and halal
The all-natural gum product is obtained from two acacia species growing in the “Gum Belt” of Africa: 19 nations from Sudan through Chad, up to Nigeria.
Sudan, Ethiopia, and Kenya are leading producers.
Some 10 million people are employed in the industry.
Ninety percent of the ingredient is harvested from acacia Senegal trees.
The acacia seyal gums are also marketed.
The sap is typically pale to orange-brown in color and graded after harvest.
Gums that form whole or round tears and are orange-brown are deemed the highest quality.
Acacia gum is non-GMO.
Some 99 percent of the trees from which the product is harvested grow wild; however, commercial scale plantations are being developed in Senegal.
Food and beverage account for 60 percent of global demand.
Acacia gum is unique due to its emulsifying properties, which allow it to efficiently stabilize a food system.
This results in products with a superior texture and a good mouthfeel.
Acacia gum used to improve the texture of gluten-free breads in conjunction with starches, oils, enzymes or skimmed milk powder.
Gum arabic has reportedly improved softness in breads by 25 percent and extended commercial product shelf life by 50 percent.
Acacia gum is high in fiber with 90 percent soluble fiber in dry extract8 and is a natural prebiotic.
However, FDA does not consider gum arabic as dietary fiber due to insufficient evidence to support the physiological effect of gum arabic on human health.4
Gum arabic is a heteropolysaccharide with extremely high solubility in water.
Gum arabic can be subdivided into three structural groups:
The gum is harvested and sold to either a trader or directly to a trading organization.
The gum is cleaned and sorted for export. Upon import, the majority of acacia gum undergoes additional processing.
Gum arabic is either “kibbled” or powdered.
As the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations explains, “Kibbling entails passing whole or large lumps of gum through a hammer mill and then screening it to produce smaller granules of more uniform size.
These pieces are more easily dissolved in water, and under more reproducible conditions, than the raw gum and so are preferred by the end-user.”
The powdered gum is produced by taking a solution of gum in water that is filtered and pasteurized before being spray dried.
The process can be controlled to produce a powder meeting the end user’s specific requirements.
Dissolve in water portion before introducing it to any oils.
Gum arabic is heat sensitive.
Due to the proteins in its structure, Gum arabics emulsifying capabilities decrease with heat.
The best results are reported with a concentration of 1 to 3 percent.
Gum arabic can be used in products with an acidic pH.
In pastries, Gum arabic is typically used in fillings or frosting due to its ability to emulsify the fat/water interfaces.
Gum arabic is traditionally used on gingerbread products to give a glossy and tacky shine.
While gum arabic has been harvested in Arabia, Sudan, and West Asia since antiquity, sub-Saharan acacia gum has a long history as a prized export.
The gum exported came from the band of acacia trees that once covered much of the Sahel region, the southern littoral of the Sahara Desert that runs from the Atlantic Ocean to the Red Sea.
Today, the main populations of gum-producing Acacia species are found in Mauritania, Senegal, Mali, Burkina Faso, Niger, Nigeria, Chad, Cameroon, Sudan, Eritrea, Somalia, Ethiopia, Kenya, and Tanzania.
Acacia is tapped for gum by stripping bits off the bark, from which gum then exudes.
Traditionally harvested by seminomadic desert pastoralists in the course of their transhumance cycle, acacia gum remains a main export of several African nations, including Mauritania, Niger, Chad, and Sudan.
Total world gum arabic exports are today (2019) estimated at 160,000 tonnes, having recovered from 1987 to 1989 and 2003–2005 crises caused by the destruction of trees by the desert locust.
Acacia, also known as gum arabic, is the dried exudate gathered from acacia trees that grow in the Sahelian region of Africa.
-Emulsifies and stabilizes flavors and beverages
-Forms films and coatings in panned confections
-Enhances mouthfeel in beverages
-Strong adhesive and binding properties
The combination of film formation and emulsification makes Gum Arabic an excellent natural ingredient for applications in oil-based flavor concentrates, beverage emulsions and foams.
These functionalities have facilitated the use of Gum Arabic as a replacement for other ingredients in both simple and complex emulsions following the clean labeling desire of consumers.
Emulsion stability is achieved from the water phase for both oil in water emulsions and foams.
The water binding functionality assists in managing quality of frozen products in both low and high total solids applications.
When combined with limited viscosity development, Gum Arabic is used to extend shelf life through moisture management in many shelf-stable foods.
Combining the ability to form stable thin films and the natural stickiness of carbohydrate polymer solutions provides an application for solutions of Gum Arabic to be used as natural adhesives both to hold layers of products together and to attach particles to the surface of products.
Film formation functionality is also utilized to form barrier coatings most commonly in panned confections with or without chocolate.
What is Acacia Gum? Acacia gum is also called gum arabic.
Gum arabic is made from the sap of the Acacia senegal tree, or gum acacia.
Gum arabic is used medicinally as well as in the production of many items.
In fact, the many acacia gum uses span numerous professional industries.
Gum arabic may even be an important part of everyday health.
Further acacia arabic information can help you decide if you should include Gum arabic in your diet.
Much of the supply of acacia gum comes from the Sudan region, but also from Nigeria, Niger, Mauritania, Mali, Chad, Kenya, Eritrea, and Senegal.
Gum arabic comes from the thorny Acacia senegal tree where the sap bubbles up to the surface of the branches.
Workers must brave those thorns to scrape the stuff off the bark as Gum arabic occurs during the rainy season.
The sap is dried using the naturally warm temperatures of the region.
This process is called curing.
Countless tons of the sap is sent annually to Europe for processing.
There Gum arabic is cleaned, dissolved in water, and dried again to create a powder.
The sap is a cold, water soluble polysaccharide.
In Gum arabics gum form, the product thins out as temperature rises.
These variable forms make Gum arabic useful in a host of products.
Historical Gum Arabic Information Gum arabic was first used in Egypt in the mummification process to adhere the bandage wrappings.
Gum arabic was even used in cosmetics.
The substance was used to stabilize paint as early as biblical times.
During the Stone Age, Gum arabic was used as a food and an adhesive.
Ancient Greek writings mention Gum arabics use to relieve discomfort of blisters, burns, and stop nose bleeds.
Gum arabic can be almost completely dissolved in Gum arabics own volume of water—a very unusual characteristic.
I added the resulting solution to the pancake syrup, and in less than half a minute, the sugar crystals dissolved.
Gum arabic is the hardened sap of the Acacia senegal tree, which is found in the swath of arid lands extending from Senegal on the west coast of Africa all the way to Pakistan and India.
Just as Arabic numerals acquired their name because Europeans learned of them from the Arabs—who had picked them up from India—so too do we owe the name of gum arabic not so much to its origins, but to Europe’s early trading contacts with the Middle East.
In Turkey, illuminators used gum arabic in the application of gold to manuscripts by mixing 24-carat gold leaf with melted gum arabic to make a gold paste.
This they applied with fine brushes dipped in a gelatin solution.
The ability to judge the correct density of the gold paste and the gelatin prior to application was one of the marks of an accomplished illuminator.
Too much gelatin would make the gold look dull, while too little could cause the gold film to crack.
Gum arabic was also important to Turkish scribes for making lampblack ink, which was obtained by burning linseed oil, beeswax, naphtha or kerosene in a restricted airflow.
The resulting imperfect combustion produced a fine black soot that could be collected on the inside of a cone or tent of paper or a sheepskin placed above the flame.
The soot—lampblack—was then mixed with gum arabic and water.
The carbon particles in the ink did not dissolve but remained suspended in the water, thanks to the emulsifying qualities of the gum.
When the ink was applied to the paper, the particles remained on the surface, offering a smooth appearance.
In case of an error, they could be easily wiped or scraped away.
In contrast, most modern inks are solutions that are absorbed into the fibers of the paper.
According to Sudanese sources, gum arabic was an article of commerce as early as the 12th century BC.
Gum arabic was collected in Nubia and exported north to Egypt for use in the preparation of inks, watercolors and dyes.
Herodotus, writing in the fifth century BC, mentions Gum arabics use in embalming in Egypt.
In the ninth century of our era, the Arab physician Abu Zayd Hunayn ibn Ishaq al-Ibadi, writing in his Ten Treatises on the Eye, described gum arabic as an ingredient in poultices or eye compresses.
By the Middle Ages, gum arabic was valued in Europe among scribes and illustrators.
Following the gilding of letters in illuminated manuscripts, the application of color was the final stage.
For this, illustrators mixed pigment in a binding medium.
Until the 14th century, the most common medium was glair, which was obtained from egg whites.
However, glair was not only difficult to prepare, Gum arabic also reduced the intensity of the colors.
When it was discovered that gum arabic—so readily soluble in water—could be applied more thinly and that the resulting colors were more transparent and intense, gum replaced glair.
Gum arabic slows the rate of absorption of some drugs, including amoxycillin, from the gut.
Nomadic populations of the Sahel and Arabia have known the beneficial effects of gum arabic for ages.
In Europe, pharmaceutical applications were also among the first uses.
Gum Arabic (acacia Senegal) is a complex polysaccharide indigestible to both humans and animals.
Gum arabic has been considered as a safe dietary fiber by the United States, Food and Drug Administration (FDA) since the 1970s.
Although its effects were extensively studied in animals, there is paucity of data regarding Gum arabics quantified use in humans.
This study was conducted to determine effects of regular Gum Arabic (GA) ingestion on body mass index and body fat percentage among healthy adult females.
A two-arm randomized, placebo controlled, double-blind trial was conducted in the Department of Physiology at the Khartoum University.
A total of 120 healthy females completed the study.
They were divided to two groups: A test group of 60 volunteers receiving GA (30 gm /day) for 6 weeks and a placebo group of 60 volunteers receiving pectin (1 gm/day) for the same period of time.
Weight and height were measured before and after intervention using standardized height and weight scales.
Skin fold thickness was measured using Harpenden Skin fold caliper.
Fat percentage was calculated using Jackson and Pollock 7 caliper method and Siri equation.
Unground acacia gum is a white or yellowish-white spheroidal tears with different sizes.
Also available in the form of ﬂakes, granular, powder or spray-dried powder.
Gum arabic is a cold water-soluble polysaccharide and a multi-functional hydrocolloid.
1g dissolves in 2 mL cold water; insoluble in ethanol.
Gum arabic has a low viscosity, and its viscosity of 30% gum arabic solution is lower than 1% of CMC at low shear rates.
Gum acacia, which is derived from the acacia tree, is a natural solution for product texture and stability challenges, from creating innovative confectionery products to stabilizing emulsions, particulates and flavours in beverages.
Gum arabic ingredients are fully soluble in water, provide consistent functionality in a range of applications and are available as a spray-dried fine powder or a novel fast-dissolving granulated version.
What’s the application of gum arabic?
Acacia Gum is commonly used in food, cosmetics and pharmaceuticals for its thickening, emulsifying and binding properties.
Not only is Gum arabic used for Gum arabics functional benefits, Gum arabic’s also valued as a natural ingredient that contributes dietary fiber.
Gum arabic can be used as a glaze or coating in confectionery and the common uses are in chocolates, candies and chewing gum.
Generally, the purpose is to prevent sugar crystallization, modify texture, keep the emulsion stable and distribute fatty components evenly.
Gum arabic can be used in soft drinks due to such advantages:
-the low viscosity: that will not make a change to the overall viscosity of the beverage.
-excellent solubility in aqueous solution.
-stable in a wide PH range.
-as a stabilizer in oil in water emulsions.
-strengthen the foam stability in beer and soft drinks.
-as a fining/clarifying agent in winemaking.
-as a carrier for flavor encapsulation.
Food grade gum arabic powder is a widely edible gum that can be found in the bakery, confectionery, beverage, dairy and so on.
More than 80% of gum arabic is used in the food production for emulsification, encapsulation, coating, gum candies and so on.
Generally, in the baking industry, gum arabic is used for Gum arabics low water absorption, viscoelastic properties and high soluble fiber characteristics.
Gum arabic can be used as an emulsion stabilizer, also Gum arabic imparts smooth, increases dough height, as well as enlarges the volume of bread.
Gum arabic can replace eggs for generating an attractive glossy coating, which will be appropriate for vegetarians and people allergic to eggs.
Gum arabic reduces ice crystallization in frozen dough.
Gum arabic increases tortilla roll-ability, water retention, and shelf life.
Per the “European Commission database for information on cosmetic substances and ingredients”, guar gum can function as a film forming and masking agent in cosmetic and personal care products.
Acacia gum, more commonly known as Gum Arabic, is obtained from the Acacia senegal and several related species of small Acacia trees native to the hot dry regions of northern and central Africa and the Middle East.
Acacias are various species of small trees or shrubs 10 to 25 feet in height with a spread of 10 to 15 feet.
Small 'tears' of gum oozes naturally from the trunk, but is stimulated by cutting thin strips of bark from the trees, about 2-3 feet long and 2 inches wide.
The gum thickens on exposure to the air, and the oval 'tears' are then collected.
Gum Arabic is water soluble, odorless and tasteless.
Gum Arabic is widely used as an emulsifier, thickening agent, stabilizer and flavor enhancer in commercial food production.
Gum arabic is used in the manufacture of such products as beverages, dairy products, snack foods, chewing gum, candy, confections, and fats.
Gum Arabic retards sugar crystalization in candy and confections, smooths the texture of ice cream, enhances the flavor of fruit beverages, and stabilizes the foam in beers.
Gum arabic is also in the manufacture of paper, ink, textiles, adhesives, pharmaceuticals and cosmetics.
We can find the following personal care products contain Gum arabic:
-liquid hand soap
-lipstick and others
Due to Gum arabics high soluble fiber content, acacia fiber is thought to help lower cholesterol levels, keep blood sugar in check, protect against diabetes, and aid in the treatment of digestive disorders such as irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).
Soluble fiber (one of the main types of dietary fiber) dissolves in water and forms a gel-like substance in the intestines.
In addition, acacia fiber is said to suppress appetite, reduce gut inflammation, alleviate constipation, relieve diarrhea, and support weight loss efforts (by helping you stay full for longer).
Acacia fiber is also said to be prebiotic (a non-digestible food ingredient in dietary fiber that can stimulate the growth of beneficial bacteria in the intestines).
Pre and post analysis among the study group showed significant reduction in BMI by 0.32 (95% CI: 0.17 to 0.47; P<0.0001) and body fat percentage by 2.18% (95% CI: 1.54 to 2.83; P<0.0001) following regular intake of 30 gm /day Gum Arabic for six weeks.
Side effects caused by GA ingestion were experienced only in the first week.
They included unfavorable viscous sensation in the mouth, early morning nausea, mild diarrhea and bloating abdomen.
MDL Number: MFCD00081264
Four forms of gum arabic
Gum arabic can be classified into 4 forms (raw material, middle, powdered and spray-dried) according to the degree of the manufacturing process.
1. Raw gum arabic
Gum arabic is the raw form only through manual treatment sorting out the lumps, according to the size, colour, and visual aspect.
Gum arabic is mainly used for food application: confectionery and wine.
2. Kibbled acacia gum
Gum arabic is the raw acacia gum after grinding process, in order to reduce the size of the gum lumps.
The wood / bark particles and any other foreign materials can be removed after kibbling flow.
The kibbled form is traditionally used in confectionery production.
3. Powdered acacia gum
Gum arabic is the fine powder obtained from the finely milling of the kibbled acacia gum, which looks like flour.
This powder is dusted on the surface of candies in confectionery production; and in pharmaceuticals application where special powder density is needed for pills.
4. Spray-dried Acacia gum
Gum arabic is pure form and the main use of the product over the world.
A water soluble gum commonly used in binding media of paints.
Gum arabic is the amorphous exudate from the stem of several species of Acacia trees, especially Acacia senegal and Acacia arabica, found in tropical and subtropical areas of the world.
Most gum arabic coming from the sub-Sahara region in Africa.
Gum arabic contains Arabinose, Galactose, Rhamnose, and glucuronic acid.
Gum arabic is sold in the form of round lumps, granules, thin flakes or as a powder; all of which may be white or slightly yellowish.
Gum arabic is completely soluble in hot and cold water, yielding a viscous solution.
However, heating a gum arabic solution to the boiling point will cause it to darken and will change its adhesion properties.
Aqueous solutions of gum arabic will precipitate or gel with the addition of ferric salts, Borax, alcohol, or Sodium silicate.
Gum arabic is used in watercolor paints, inks, lithographs, and for textile sizing.
The earliest known inks consisted of gum arabic and Lampblack.
How is it made?
Acacia gum is the result of a bacterial or fungal infection mostly on the wild trees also in cultivated gardens.
Gum arabic is exuded or produced only from unhealthy trees which were stimulated by heat, poor nutrition and drought.
Generally, the following are 6 steps manufacturing process of gum arabic powder.
The farmers of West & South East Sudan start tapping the two species of arabic trees, acacia senegal and acacia seyal in Autumn.
They make small cuts in the bark to allow the glue-like sap to seep out.
The hardened gum arabic nodules are gathered under the sun for a few days to make it dry.
The dried gum is then cleaned manually to remove small bark fibers and any other impurities.
Dry puriﬁcation processing
Using kibbling, sieving and pulverization to remove vegetable and mineral impurities.
Aqueous solution purification
This step is much more efficient.
Dissolve the gum in water and all the impurities can be removed by a series of filtration steps.
Beverage formulators working on a new product must work within a matrix of needs encompassing technical formulation challenges, marketing department desires and cost considerations.
Do you want the drink to be all natural? Organic? GMO free? Do you need a fibre source?
A clear or cloudy emulsion? What mouthfeel are you trying to promote? What oils are you trying to emulsify?
What is the flavour oil concentration going to be? How shelf-stable does Gum arabic need to be?
Or might Gum arabic be an instant beverage sold in a powder form for consumer reconstitution?
When formulators begin filling in the criteria for this multi-dimensional matrix, the answers will determine which of the different approaches should be taken in picking the emulsifier.
Gum acacia is widely known throughout the beverage industry as a robust multi-functional emulsifier.
Gum arabic lends itself well to beverages for a variety of reasons.
Gum arabic acts as the primary emulsifier for flavour oils, permitting dispersion of the oil into the water and stabilizing the beverage to avoid ringing and creaming.
Gum arabic is stable in low pH environments, often an important criteria for beverages.
At the same time, Gum arabic has a low viscosity response in water, so Gum arabic can provide mouthfeel without any adverse effect on the original beverage texture.
With roller drying or spray dried processes to concentrate the gum syrup and get rid of bacterial contamination.
Nowadays spray dried method is the common way to produce acacia gum.
Gum arabic can keep all properties of the raw gum while roller drying method reduces Gum arabics emulsifying properties by drastic thermal treatment.
Spray dried acacia gum has the lower content of water (loss on drying not more than 10%) than the not spray-dried acacia gum (loss on drying not more than 15%).
Two grades of gum arabic
Arabic gum is mainly divided into two types based on the two tree sources: acacia senegal (hashab grade) and acacia seyal (talha grade).
Both grades have the same compositions and sugar residues but with different content.
The average molecular mass of the gum obtained from A. senegal is higher than from that of A. seyal.
Most internationally traded gum arabic comes from acacia senegal.
Acacia senegal is a bushy tree, having a wide distribution in Africa and Western Africa.
Acacia seyal is a small to medium size tree, up to 10 -12m height.
Talha grade is more brittle than Hashab grade.
Acacia has been used in medicines, baking ingredients, tools, and woodwork for centuries.
Gum arabic has a long history in civilizations as ancient as the Egyptians and the aboriginal tribes of Australia.
These kingdoms and tribes used acacia in surprisingly diverse ways, from making desserts to treating hemorrhoids.
The first species ever discovered was given the name Acacia nilotica by the Swedish scientist Carl Linnaeus in the 1700s, and since then, nearly 1,000 species have been added to the Acacia genus.
Acacia still sits on grocery store shelves in crushed, ground, and whole form.
The name Acacia itself refers to a genus of plant that includes many different types of plants, such as trees and shrubs.
Gum arabic can be used in a variety of applications.
The acacia that you can buy today may come from one or more of these species.
Most of the time, the acacia in food or medicine is Acacia senegal (L.) Willd.
This type of acacia is usually in gum form, and Gum arabic will say acacia gum on labels and packaging.
A natural additive obtained from the bark of the acacia tree, Gum Arabic is colorless, tasteless and odorless and is used in commercial food processing to thicken, emulsify and stabilize foods such as candy, ice cream, sweet syrups, used to strengthen royal icing and to make an edible glue for gum paste.
Gum glue is used to fasten Gum Paste flowers and figures together.
How long has gum arabic been used in foods?
Gum arabic has most likely been consumed for thousands of years, and has been used as a food additive for hundreds.
Does gum arabic contain genetically modified organisms (GMOs)?
No, gum arabic does not contain GMOs.
How does the production and use of gum arabic impact the environment?
Acacia trees are beneficial to their environment, nourishing the surrounding soil and help to prevent desertification.
In the Pharmaceutical industry, acacia gum is used as an excipient, e.g. as a suspending and emulsifying agent, as an adhesive and binder in tableting and demulcent syrups, as EFSA mentioned.
Gum arabic is the traditional binder used in watercolor paint for artists as it can easily dissolve in water and other color pigments are suspended in the acacia gum that results in watercolor paint.
Other uses including ceramics, photography, lithography, inks (calligraphy), printmaking and so on.
Is Gum Arabic Safe to eat?
Yes, Gum arabic almost has no side effects and the safety has been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and European Food Safety Authority (EFSA), as well as the Joint FAO/WHO Expert Committee on Food Additives (JECFA).
Additional Information: Agar, Starch, Tragacanth, dextrin, sucrose: Absent
Arsenic (As): 3ppm max.
Ash: Total ash: < 4.0%
Heavy Metals (as Pb): 40ppm max.
Identification: Passes Test (per Eur. Pharm.)
Insoluble Matter: 0.1% max.
Physical Form: Powder
Infrared Spectrum: Authentic
Loss on Drying: 15.0% max. (1 g, 105°C)
Packaging: Plastic bottle
Solubility: Solubility in water: soluble. Other solubilities: insoluble in alcohol
Specific Gravity: 1.35
Color: Beige-Yellow to White
Chemical Name or Material: Gum arabic
The FDA claimed gum arabic added directly to human food affirmed as generally recognized as safe (GRAS).
The following food may contain it and with the max uses levels (from high to low):
-Soft candy: 85.0%
-Hard candy and cough drops: 46.5%
-Confections and frostings: 12.4%
-Nuts and nut products: 8.3%
-Quiescently frozen confection products: 6.0%
-Chewing gum: 5.6%
-Snack foods: 4.0%
-Gelatins, puddings, and fillings: 2.5%
-Beverages and beverage bases: 2.0%
-Fats and oils: 1.5%
-Dairy product analogs: 1.3%
-All other food categories: 1.0%
Why is gum arabic necessary in foods and beverages?
When used as an emulsifier, gum arabic helps bind water and oil molecules, creating a smooth, homogeneous solution which consumers expect.
When used as a stabilizer, gum arabic helps provide a smooth texture in a product, provide body and mouthfeel, and help keep nutrients and other components in the product from separating, which is key in meeting consumer expectations and preventing nutrients from calcifying at the bottom of the product.
When used as a thickener, gum arabic helps increase the viscosity of a liquid product without altering other qualities.
All of these functions help extend shelf life and allow products to have different textures.
Uses: Used as a stabilizer, thickener and emulsifier in: Candy making, ice cream, marshmallows, soda, art and photography.
Substitutes:Xanthan Gum, Guar Gum, Locust Bean Gum, Clear Jel Instant and Lecithin Powder.
How does gum arabic make food more affordable?
Gum arabic acts as a stabilizer, which can help extend a product’s shelf life.
If the common foods associated with gum arabic did not contain that ingredient, their shelf life would decrease drastically contributing to food waste and additional costs to consumers.
Synonyms and Related Terms
goma arábiga (Esp.); gomme d'acacia (Fr.); gomme arabique (Fr.); gomma di acacia (It); gomma arabica (It); kordofan; picked turkey; white sennar; senegal gum; ghezineh gum; gomme blonde; gomme blanche; gum acacia, East India gum; kami; wattle gum
In the work of Shakespeare, Jacob Cats and many other European poets of the 13th to 17th centuries, gum arabic represented the "noble Orient".
In the Sahel, Gum arabic is a symbol of the purity of youth.
Gum arabic, also known as gum acacia, is the dried gummy exudate from tropical and subtropical Acacia senegal trees.
The exudate is a proteinaceous polysaccharide, the protein content ranging from ca.1.5% to 3% for samples from different producing areas.
The proteinaceous components of eight bulk commercial gum arabic samples, and for eleven gum specimens secured from Acacia senegal trees show that their amino acid compositions vary considerably, particularly with respect to the three major components (hydroxyproline, serine and proline), although the proportions of other amino acids (e.g., alanine, cysteine, isoleucine, methionine, threonine, tyrosine and valine) are remarkably constant.
Gum arabic consists of several high-molecular-weight polysaccharides and their salts, which on hydrolysis yield arabinose, galactose, rhamnose and glucoronic acid
The trees of Acacia seyal grow under extreme climatic conditions in Eastern Africa and the Gum Arabic exudate is collected naturally from the stem.
The exudate hardens into the Gum Arabic and Nagaad Gums, in collaboration with the local communities, harvests the gum for further processing and sales.
The Gum Arabic from Acacia seyal is a superior product and being edible and soluble in water Gum arabic is used primarily as a stabilizer in the food industry.
The gum also has a wide range of industrial applications such as use in the production of paints, inks, cosmetics, glue, and viscosity control in textile industries.
Acacia seyal is also highly valued for Gum arabics medicinal properties and used for colds, diarrhoea, haemorrhages, jaundice, headaches and burns.
Gum arabic is even used as an analgesic.
This product is free from any contaminates as analysed by our laboratory facilities.
Gum arabic is 100% organic as the trees grow naturally and wildly.
Gum arabic is used primarily in the food industry as a stabilizer.
Gum arabic is edible and has E number E414.
Gum arabic is a key ingredient in traditional lithography and is used in printing, paint production, glue, cosmetics and various industrial applications, including viscosity control in inks and in textile industries, though less expensive materials compete with it for many of these roles.
ACACIA GUM, ACACIA , ACACIA SEYAL, ARABIC GUM
Identify arabinose, galactose, rhamnose and glucuronic acid as follows:
Boil a mixture of 100 mg of the sample and 20 ml of 10% sulfuric acid for 3h.
Allow to cool and add excess barium carbonate, mixing with a magnetic stirrer until the solution is of pH 7, and filter.
Evaporate the filtrate in a rotary evaporator at 30-50° in vacuum until a crystalline or syrupy residue is obtained.
Dissolve in 10 ml of 40% methanol.
This is the hydrolysate.
Place 1 to 10 m l spots of the hydrolysate on the starting line of two chromatoplates and spots containing 1 to 10 m g of arabinose, galactose, rhamnose and glucuronic acid, expected to be present in the hydrolysate.
Use two solvent systems one for each plate: A. a mixture of formic acid, methyl ethyl ketone, tertiary butanol and water (15:30:40:15 by volume) and B. a mixture of isopropanol, pyridine, acetic acid and water (40:40:5:20 by volume) to develop the plates.
After development, spray with a solution of 1.23 g anisidine and 1.66 g phthalic acid in 100 ml ethanol and heat the plates at 100° for 10 min.
A greenish yellow colour is produced with hexoses, a red colour with pentoses and a brown colour with uronic acids.
Compare sample spots with those for the solutions of arabinose, galactose, rhamnose and glucuronic acid.
Additional spots corresponding to mannose, xylose, and galacturonic acid should be absent.
Establishing the diagnosis of an allergy to gum arabic
Defining the allergen responsible for eliciting signs and symptoms
-Responsible for allergic disease and/or anaphylactic episode
-To confirm sensitization prior to beginning immunotherapy
-To investigate the specificity of allergic reactions to insect venom allergens, drugs, or chemical allergens
How Much Gum Arabic to Use
A typical ratio for stabilization and thickening is 1.0-45.0% gum Arabic by weight.
Dispersion and Hydration of Gum Arabic
Gum Arabic can be hydrated in hot or cold liquids by blending.
Gum Arabic is a dried exudate obtained from the stems and branches of Acacia senegal (L.) Willdenow or closely related species of Acacia (fam. Leguminosae).
A. seyal is a closely related species.
Gum arabic consists mainly of high-molecular weight polysaccharides and their calcium, magnesium, and potassium salts, which on hydrolysis yield arabinose, galactose, rhamnose, and glucuronic acid.
Items of commerce may contain extraneous materials such as sand and pieces of bark which must be removed before use in food.
Gum arabic from A. seyal is sometimes referred to as gum talha.
CAS Number: 9001-01-5
Hazard Info: Allergen
Density (g/mL): 1.35-1.49
Synonyms: Acacia, Aracia Gum
Shelf Life (months): 36
Gum arabic is a complex polysaccharide indigestible to both animals and humans.
Gum arabic has been considered as a safe dietary fibre by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) since the 1970s.
Acacia gum contains water-soluble dietary fibers that are not only good fibre for diet but also help control sugar levels and lower blood cholesterol.
Gum arabic is extensively used in the food and beverages and pharmaceuticals industries.
Gum arabic is stable in acid conditions and is widely used as an emulsifier in the production of concentrated citrus and cola flavor oils for application in soft drinks.
The gum is able to inhibit flocculation and coalescence of the oil droplets over several months and furthermore the emulsions remain stable for up to a year when diluted up to ~ 500 times with sweetened carbonated water prior to bottling.
In the preparation of the emulsion a weighting agent is normally added to the oil in order to increase the density to match that of the final beverage and thus inhibit creaming.
Typical weighting agents that are used, subject to legislation in various parts of the world, are glycerol ester of wood, gum damar, and sucrose acetate isobutyrate (SAIB).
SAIB is not normally used by itself but usually in conjunction with rosin or gum damar.