Fluidized bed granulation is widely applied to improve the flowability, dispersibility, and solubility of a variety of powdered food products. In fluidized bed granulation processing of powdered food, water or an aqueous polysaccharide solution is usually sprayed as binder on the powder for granule growth. However, the increased moisture content of granules can result in product spoilage and elongates the successive drying period. To reduce the amount of binder in the granulation process, fluidized bed granulation technology using superheated steam (SHS) containing water micro-droplets (WMD) as binder has been developed. Spraying of SHS accelerated the granule growth by condensing on the powder; however, coarse granules were produced when SHS alone was sprayed. Spraying with an optimal ratio of SHS and WMD produced granules of uniform size, with less binder moisture than conventional processes using polysaccharide solutions.
We investigated the relationship between the phase separated structure and fracture properties of multicomponent gels. Specifically, we focused on the fracture properties and structure of three types of gels with different continuous phases (egg white protein (EWP) continuous, bicontinuous for both EWP and agar, and agar continuous). In addition, we revealed the effect of oil addition on EWP-agar gels with three different continuous phases. The fracture properties of mixed gels were analyzed by a large deformation test. The gel structure was also observed by confocal laser scanning microscopy and scanning electron microscopy. Results demonstrated that the continuous phase component contributed to the physical fracture properties of multicomponent gels.