Quality Assessment of Date Fruit (as Sweetener) and Date Seed Powder (as an alternative to Coffee)
Purpose:The objective of this study was to produce and investigate the quality of date fruit powder (as sweetener) and date seed (as alternative to coffee).
Methodology:Date fruit was dried and compared with other sweeteners and coded; date fruit SWD, honey SWH and sugar SWS. These were analysed for mineral content (Fe, Ca, K, Mg and Zn) and sugar (Glucose, Fructose and Sucrose). Date seed sample were roasted using oven and traditional method and compared with a commercial brand coffee and coded as follow: oven method ROD, traditional method RTD and Nescafe RTN, Mineral content (Fe, Ca, K, Mg, Mn and Zn) and phytochemical profiling (Caffeine, Flavonoid and Alkaloid) was conducted on the samples.
Findings:The result for the mineral content of date fruit powder and other sweeteners showed that date fruit had the highest content of potassium and appreciable amount of other minerals except magnesium. Values are Fe 6.53-14.39mg/100g, Ca 0.61-1.16mg/100g, K 0.57-1.31mg/100g and Zn 1.21-1.56mg/100g. Sugar content values are Sucrose 5.23-99.32%, Glucose 0.01-37.54% and Fructose 0.01-29.21%. Date seed powder phytochemical profiling showed that commercial brand (RTN) had the highest amount of caffeine and alkaloids while the ROD (oven roasted) had the highest value of phenol. Mineral content for date seed samples and commercial brand ranged as follows Fe 2.45-3.45 mg/100g, Ca 5.18- 28.32mg/100g, K 56.19 – 83.19mg/100g, Mg 2.02 – 4.31 mg/100g, Mn 4.13 – 5.37mg/100g and Zn 8.77 – 18.33 mg/100g. ROD had the highest values for Fe and Mg while RTD scored high in Ca, K and Zn compared to commercial brand.
Unique contribution to theory, practice and policy:Date fruit can be adopted as sweetener in place of other natural sweeteners while date seed powder can be used in place of coffee with lesser caffeine content and improved mineral content.
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