If you wash chia seeds after you harvest them, they turn into a gelatinous goo. Which can be a problem if you are trying to tackle salmonella, contamination with which is currently causing some big issues in the trade.
One firm claiming to offer a solution to this problem is Florida-based Valensa International, which has been granted a series of patents on its chia production technology, which ‘washes’ the seeds with CO2 gas and conducts chia seed oil extraction in an oxygen free environment – ensuring low bacterial counts.
Valensa CEO Dr Rudi Moerck said: “When companies use raw or even milled Chia seeds, they run the risk of delivering a contaminated end product – which is what we are hearing about in the news lately. Valensa has solved these issues.”
Meanwhile, different methods of processing chia can also yield very different results from a nutritional and quality perspective, he added.
For example, producers of milled seeds often add ‘expeller cake’ that has deposits of surface oil that rapidly goes rancid, which means they can have a short shelf life, he claimed, while the protein, fiber and omega-3 content of Valensa’s ChiaMax chia flour was significantly higher than traditionally milled chia seeds.
US patent #8,586,104 covers a method of manufacturing a two-year stable chia seed oil using supercritical fluid-based extraction followed by fractionation.
US patent #8,652,544 is a composition of matter patent, covering stable, zero rancidity defatted whole grain flour from whole ground chia seeds.
US patent #8,574,637 is a composition of matter patent covering a stable supercritical CO2 extracted, fractionated Chia seed oil and its combination with a number of other ingredients such as fish oil, krill oil, olive oil and Astaxanthin.
Click HERE to read more about the recent chia-related product recalls at FoodSafetyNews.