Cassia gum is a food additive made from the endosperm of cassia obtusifolia also known as senna obtusifolia or cassia tora. Cassia gum is a naturally occurring polymer with mannose and galactose as its repeating units. Cassia gum forms high viscosity by swelling in water after it is boiled. Cassia gum is the purified flour from the endosperm of the seeds of cassia obtusifolia and cassia tora which belong to the leguminosae family. These seeds are generally contaminated with seeds from C.occidentalis. The seeds that are used in the production of cassia gum are generally picked randomly from these contaminated seeds. Before the seed splitting process is started, the seeds of cassia obtusifolia and cassia tora are passed through grading machines to differentiate them on the basis of their size. During this procedure, the underdeveloped seeds are removed and C.occidentalis seeds are reduced to no more than 0.05%. A composite sample of each fraction is given to the laboratory for inspection for the presence of C.occidentalis. Cassia gum is primarily the ground purified endosperm of the seeds of Cassia tora and Cassia obtusifolia containing less than 0.1% of C.occidentalis. The seeds are dehusked and de-germed by thermal mechanical treatment followed by milling and screening of the endosperm. The ground endosperm is further purified by extraction with isopropanol. Cassia gum is used as thickener, emulsifier, foam stabilizer, moisture retention agent and texturizing agent in cheese, frozen dairy desserts and mixes, meat products and poultry products.
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