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Phenolic compounds, flavonoids and antioxidant activity in different cocoa samples from organic and conventional cultivation

Cassiane da Silva Oliveira (Faculdade de Farmácia, Universidade Federal da Bahia, Campus Universitário de Ondina, Salvador, Brazil)
Leonardo Fonseca Maciel (Faculdade de Farmácia, Universidade Federal da Bahia, Campus Universitário de Ondina, Salvador, Brazil)
Maria Spínola Miranda (Faculdade de Farmácia, Universidade Federal da Bahia, Campus Universitário de Ondina, Salvador, Brazil)
Eliete da Silva Bispo (Faculdade de Farmácia, Universidade Federal da Bahia, Campus Universitário de Ondina, Salvador, Brazil)

British Food Journal

ISSN: 0007-070X

Article publication date: 6 September 2011

Abstract

Purpose

Due to the importance attributed to the phenolic compounds present in cocoa samples for their beneficial effects on health, the purpose of this paper was to analyze four samples of organically and conventionally cultivated cocoa from the south area of Bahia for their composition of phenolics, flavonoids and their antioxidant activity.

Design/methodology/approach

Non‐fermented beans, fermented beans, roasted nibs and cocoa liquor were analyzed using spectrophotometry.

Findings

In general, the samples that contained a higher level of phenolics and flavonoids were the roasted nibs and the non‐fermented samples in both cultivation systems. The fermented beans and the liquor contained a lower level.

Practical implications

The relationship between the concentration of total phenols and the capacity to “mop up” free radicals from the cocoa extracts appears to be highly significant. The extracts with a higher concentration of phenols also show higher antioxidant activity (non‐fermented beans extracts and organically and conventionally cultivated nibs).

Originality/value

This work brings an important contribution in the field of agriculture at a time when organic systems of cultivation are an alternative to the conventional system and that pollutes the environment and produces food that contains quantities of chemical contaminants that can damage the health of the consumer. The comparison in phenolic compounds content, flavonoids and antioxidant activity in organic and conventional systems is original and of great importance, showing that the ecological cropping systems are less harmful to the environment and promote improvements to the chemical composition of foods.

Keywords

Citation

da Silva Oliveira, C., Fonseca Maciel, L., Spínola Miranda, M. and da Silva Bispo, E. (2011), "Phenolic compounds, flavonoids and antioxidant activity in different cocoa samples from organic and conventional cultivation", British Food Journal, Vol. 113 No. 9, pp. 1094-1102. https://doi.org/10.1108/00070701111174550

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2011, Emerald Group Publishing Limited