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Barley beta-d-glucan and wheat arabinoxylan soluble fibre technologies
for health promoting bread products

Contract number : QLK1-2000-00324
Contract type : Shared Cost Project
Total cost : € 1.331.779
EC contribution : € 1.123.770
Starting date : 01/10/2000
Duration : 42 Months
Scientific Officer : Jürgen Lucas
Project website :
Prof. Dr Jan Delcour
Katholieke Universiteit Leuven
Food and Microbial Technology
Kardinaal Mercierlaan 92
3001 Heverlee
Tel.: +32-16-321634
Fax: +32-16-321997
E-mail: jan.delcour @

Soluble fibre in a diet is beneficial because it lowers the levels of blood cholesterol, a risk factor for coronary heart disease, and because it leads to a reduced postprandial glycaemic response, potentially beneficial in controlling the adverse effects of diabetes. The main objective is to provide and implement technologies for increased barley/wheat soluble fibre levels in staple food EU bread products. This requires optimisation of hull-less barley milling technology, research into barley proteins, endogenous endoxylanase inhibitors, their action towards endoxylanases, optimisation of different types of dough and bread making processes for increased soluble fibre levels and qualities, and assessment of their organoleptic properties and consumer acceptability.


The general objective of the proposed work is to enhance the health promoting effect of different European bread products by providing and implementing technologies for increased barley and wheat soluble fibre levels in consumer acceptable staple food bread products.

Specific objectives are

  • To optimise the production of health promoting barley flour and other products of barley milling both in terms of nutritional as well as in terms of functional effects.
  • To investigate and exploit the functional potential in bread making of the protein (hordein) components of barley flour.
  • To purify and characterise endoxylanase inhibitors.
  • To identify endoxylanases, which, in the presence of endoxylanase inhibitors, will preferentially hydrolyse water-unextractable arabinoxylan while leaving the solubilised high molecular weight arabinoxylan intact.
  • To identify the changes in levels of health promoting components of barley and wheat during the different phases of the dough and bread making processing.
  • To exploit endoxylanase-endoxylanase inhibitor technology for the production of straight dough breads with enhanced nutritional quality from wheat and barley flour blends on a laboratory scale.
  • To optimise the production of different styles/types of breads produced in different EU countries containing milled barley products in terms of both health promoting and organoleptic properties.
  • To evaluate the organoleptic quality and the consumer acceptability of the novel health promoting breads from wheat and barley flour blends.
(expected) Results and achievements

We expect to be successful in developing and industrially implementing technology for milling hull-less barley into flour, which will be useful in bread making and presumably in other food applications where increased soluble fibre levels are also desired. It should also be feasible to develop successfully novel forms of breads in the style of those consumed in different EU countries, which will have a significant added value in terms of health promoting effects through increasing the levels of both soluble ß-D-glucan and arabinoxylan of high molecular weight. This will be based on novel hull-less barley milling technology, the physico-chemical characteristics of the barley proteins, insight in the changes of ß-D-glucan during bread making and new endoxylanase-endoxylanase inhibitor technologies.


Cerealia Utveckling AB
153 81 Järna
University of Reading
Department of Food Science and Technology
PO Box 226
RG6 6AP Reading
United Kingdom
Sveriges Lantbruksuniversitet
Department of Food Science
PO Box 7051
750 07 Uppsala
Danisco A/S
Danisco Ingredients
Edwin Rahrs Vej 38
8220 Brabrand

Fifth Framework Programme

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