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Chocolates Could Soon Be Made Out of Jackfruit Seeds

Mar 03, 2017 08:45 AM EST
Jackfruit seeds could be used as a potential cheap substitute for processed cocoa beans in chocolate manufacturing.
(Photo : Cindy Ord/Getty Images)

A new study revealed that seeds from jackfruits could be used as a potential cheap substitute for processed cocoa beans in chocolate manufacturing.

The study, published in the Journal of Food and Agricultural Chemistry, showed that the large tropical fruit found in Asia, Africa, South America and Africa can mimic the distinct aroma and flavor of chocolates.

For the study, the researchers either acidified or fermented jackfruit seeds before drying them out to make 27 jackfruit seed flours. Using processes similar to the ones used to enhance the chocolaty flavor in cocoa beans, the researchers roasted the jackfruit seed flours for various times and pressures.

The researchers then asked the volunteers to smell the different jackfruit seed flours and describe their aroma. Interestingly, the fermented flours were described as having more positive attributes, compared to the acidified flours, with similar attributes to caramel, hazelnut or fruity aromas.

Read Also: Nestle to Cut Down Sugar Contents of Chocolates Using 'Hollow' Sugar 

Using gas chromatography-mass spectrometry, the researchers found several compounds from the jackfruit flour that are associated with chocolate aromas. These compounds include 3-methylbutanal, 2,3-diethyl-5-methylprazine and 2-phenylethyl acetate.

With their findings, the researchers concluded that jackfruit seeds can produce chocolate aromas and can be a potential alternative for the aroma of cocoa powder or chocolate. At present, about 3.7 million tons of cocoa were being harvested annually. Recent estimates suggest that the worldwide demand for cocoa beans will rise to 4.5 million tons by 2020. However, despite the increasing demand, scientists and farmers do not expect a significant increase in their yield for the next decade.

Due to the looming cocoa bean shortage  in the next decade or so, finding an alternative for cocoa bean in chocolate manufacturing can be really helpful.

The researchers chose jackfruit seed because it is considered as waste in Brazil, the largest cocoa producer in Americas. In other parts of the world, however, jackfruit seeds are boiled, steamed and roasted before being eaten as a cheap source of protein, fiber and minerals.

Read Also: FDA Tracks Nutella Consumption, US Government Considering Smaller Serving Size  

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