Enzyme preparations consist of biologically active proteins, sometimes bound to metals, carbohydrates and/or lipids. They are taken from animal, plant or microbial sources and may consist of intact cells, partial cells or cell-free extracts of the sources used. They may contain one or more active ingredients as well as carriers, solvents, preservatives, antioxidants and other substances in accordance with good manufacturing practice. They may be in liquid, semi-liquid, dried or immobilized form. The color may vary from almost colorless to dark brown.
The source of microorganisms used for the production of enzyme preparations may be natural strains or variants of microorganisms, or derived from natural strains or variants through a process of selective continuous culture or genetic modification. The strains used for the production of food enzyme preparations must be non-pathogenic and non-virulent. Assessment of the toxicity production of enzyme preparations from fungal sources should include a determination that they do not contain toxicologically significant amounts of mycotoxins known to be synthesized by strains of the producing microbial species or species related to the producing microbe.
Enzyme preparations are used in food production mainly for the production of a large number of natural additives. For example, in the sugar industry, amylases are generally used to hydrolyze starch and produce glucose and maltose, which are in high demand in the food industry. In the field of functional foods, enzymes such as proteases are mainly used to break down proteins to produce large amounts of amino acids, peptides and peptones, which greatly promote human health.