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Vol. 3 (4), 2016, Pages: 1 22

Microbial Enzyme Production Using Lignocellulosic Food Industry Wastes as Feedstock: A Review

Rajeev Ravindran and Amit K. Jaiswal

School of Food Science and Environmental Health, College of Sciences and Health, Dublin Institute of Technology, Cathal Brugha Street, Dublin D01 HV58, Ireland.


Enzymes are of great importance in the industry due to their substrate and product specificity, moderate reaction conditions, minimal by-product formation and high yield. They are important ingredients in several products and production processes. Up to 30% of the total production cost of enzymes is attributed to the raw materials costs. The food industry expels copious amounts of processing waste annually, which is mostly lignocellulosic in nature. Upon proper treatment, lignocellulose can replace conventional carbon sources in media preparations for industrial microbial processes, such as enzyme production. However, wild strains of microorganisms that produce industrially important enzymes show low yield and cannot thrive on artificial substrates. The application of recombinant DNA technology and metabolic engineering has enabled researchers to develop superior strains that can not only withstand harsh environmental conditions within a bioreactor but also ensure timely delivery of optimal results. This article gives an overview of the current complications encountered in enzyme production and how accumulating food processing waste can emerge as an environment-friendly and economically feasible solution for a choice of raw material. It also substantiates the latest techniques that have emerged in enzyme purification and recovery over the past four years.

Keywords: food industry waste; enzyme production; fermentation strategies; enzyme purification; lignocellulose.

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