Microcrystalline Cellulose (MCC)
Microcrystalline cellulose (MCC) is a very fine, white short rod or amorphous crystalline powder, made from hydrolysis of natural cellulose with dilute acid to reach the levelling off degree of polymerization, odorless and tasteless. The particle size is usually between 20 and 80 micrometers, and the levelling off degree of polymerization (LODP) is from 15 to 375. It is non-fibrous and highly mobile.
It is insoluble in water, dilute acid organic solvents and oils, partially dissolved and swollen in the dilute alkaline solution, and has higher reaction performance in the carboxymethylation, acetylation, esterification processes. Due to the special properties such as a lower degree of polymerization and a larger specific surface area, microcrystalline cellulose is widely used in medicine, food, cosmetics and light chemical industries.
There are two main forms of microcrystalline cellulose—fine powder and colloid. The former is used for adsorbents or adhesives, while the latter is used as dispersants in the liquid.The application range of the powdery microcrystalline cellulose is as the anti-caking agent, and it has anti-caking and flow aid effects. In addition, microcrystalline cellulose also is the non-nutritive component in food, and can be used as the dietary fiber in health food.
As a function dietary fiber, microcrystalline cellulose can play lot of health care roles. Microcrystalline cellulose has an oil absorption characteristic, so powdered microcrystalline cellulose can also be used as the carrier of flavor and fragrance oils. In addition, it is often used as a glidant in certain extruded foods.
The versatility of colloidal microcrystalline cellulose is manifested in the following aspects: emulsifying and foaming stability; stability at high temperatures; non-nutritive fillers and thickeners; stability and gelling agents of liquids; improving the structure of food; suspending agents; and controlling the formation of ice crystals in frozen sweets.