PROCESS FACTORS AFFECTING EXTRACTION OF PECTIN FROM UNRIPE BANANA (MUSA ACUMINATA × BALBISIANA VAR. CARDABA) PEEL
Pectin is an important food ingredient used as thickeners, water binders, and stabilizers in food. Its production could be economically attractive, especially if extracted from food processing wastes and by-products. The Plackett–Burman screening method was utilized to identify the essential factors early in the experimentation phase when complete knowledge about the system is usually unavailable. Selected 7 variables: peel nature, peel size, peel-solvent ratio, pH, extraction temperature, extraction time, and extractant: ethanol ratio was subjected to the screening experiment. These variables are relevant to pectin extraction in unripe banana (Musa acuminata × balbisiana var. Cardaba) peel. Peel nature, extraction temperature, and ethanol: pectin ratio showed positive effects on most of the variables affecting pectin extraction. On the other hand, peel size, solvent: peel ration, pH, and extraction time showed positive effects. The main factors that affected pectin extraction were determined as extraction time, extraction temperature, and peel: solvent ratio, which significantly affected the vaporization rate during pectin extraction. These factors could be further optimized to extract the best quality pectin from unripe banana peel.