Date of this Version
Published in Food and Bioprocess Technology, 2023 doi:10.1007/s11947-023-03204-z
The tomato processing industry generates large amounts of waste, which creates disposal problems and negatively impacts the environment. Tomato waste contains lycopene, high-value health- and wellness-promoting bioactive, and it is a potential source of natural lycopene for food and nutraceutical applications. However, isolation of lycopene from its source requires toxic solvents, and lycopene is unstable during storage. The objective of this study was to extract lycopene from tomato waste and to convert it to a shelf-stable and easy-to-use free-flowing powder form using green extraction and particle formation processes based on supercritical carbon dioxide (SC-CO2) technology. Lycopene was extracted using SC-CO2 and then loaded into hollow solid lipid microparticles using a particle formation process based on the atomization of SC-CO2-expanded lipids. Spherical free-flowing lycopene-loaded particles were obtained at different lycopene contents (30 and 50%, v/v). During 1-month storage at 4 and 22 °C, particles were stable in terms of morphology, polymorphism, and color. Lycopene loss was about 29% in the lipid particles at 22 °C, whereas it was 88% in the lycopene extract during 1-month storage. This green approach adds value to food processing waste and has the potential to generate bioactive carriers that are shelf-stable and convenient to store, handle, and transport.