A kitchen oil filter manufactured for Hull-based FriPura aims to address public obesity and address public health concerns associated with fried food.
Recent research carried out into oils, frying processes, and health has again thrown concerns for public health into the limelight. Most recently research carried out by De Montfort University has expressed health concerns about toxic chemicals linked to cancer and other diseases being produced as a by-product of shallow frying with vegetable oils.
In 2002 the Swedish National Food Authority (SNFA) announced that acrylamides, a toxic and potentially cancer causing chemical, are formed during the frying process of many foods. And the link between fried food and obesity is widely acknowledged.
Despite the mounting evidence, fried food, however, continues to be a popular choice with consumers both in and outside of the home, with deep fried food produced in restaurant and pub kitchens accounting for the largest percentage of oil consumed.
Launched for commercial kitchens, the FriPura filter reduces the harmful by-products created by the deep fat frying process. Independent tests carried out by Campden BRI and Bibra show that use of the filter reduces the amount of acrylamides in food by 13 per cent.
The tests also demonstrated using a FriPura filter will also reduce the amount of oil ingressed into the food. According to independent scientific testing*, the filter reduces the amount of oil absorbed by fried food by up to 23 per cent.
By using the filter, pubs and restaurants can reduce the amount of potentially cancer causing chemicals in the oil, as well as reducing calorific content and any harmful by-products found within the food. Recent tests have shown that a portion of chips fried in vegetable oil can be reduced by as much as 142 calories with up to 10 per cent less fat being absorbed by the chips.
A recent study by The McKinsey Global Institute claimed obesity in the UK costs around £47bn in economic activity and is a major strain on the NHS.
Together with the health benefits, case studies in the field have also demonstrated that the filter extends the life of cooking oil – often by more than 100 per cent – leading to not only crucial health benefits but significant financial savings relating to running deep-fat fryers.
In addition to the direct cost benefits to kitchens, halving excess oil waste will also have a hugely beneficial environmental impact.
Sam Wilbraham, executive chef and marketing director of FriPura said: “The research recommendations suggest healthier alternative frying mediums such as lard, butter, olive oil and coconut oil. However these are unsuitable for use in deep fat fryers for reasons of cost, low smoking point, flavour and lack of suitability for vegetarians.
“Oil degrades not only through exposure to heat as the research suggests but due to other physical and chemical reactions – such as oxidation, hydrolysis, and polymerisation – which happen during the frying process. All of these concerns can be addressed by the FriPura filter.
“Although we would not advocate it is eaten every day, deep-fried food continues to be popular menu option and the FriPura filter offers a way to eat fried food in a more healthy way.”