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Nutrient Composition and Microbiological Quality of Honeybee-Collected Pollen in Spain

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Agricultural and Food Laboratory, Generalitat of Catalonia, 08348 Cabrils, Barcelona, Spain
Cite this: J. Agric. Food Chem. 1997, 45, 3, 725–732
Publication Date (Web):March 17, 1997
Copyright © 1997 American Chemical Society

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    The aim of this study was to determine the composition and microbiological quality of honeybee-collected pollen from various botanical and geographical origins of Spain and to define the following physicochemical and microbiological characteristics:  water content, water activity (Aw), mean pollen pellet size, protein content, fat content, fatty acid composition, free amino acid distribution, sugar spectrum, mineral elements, dietary fiber, starch content, aflatoxins, and microbiological parameters. The free amino acid spectrum showed a high level of proline (63.1%) of the total free amino acid content (x = 31.6 ± 4 mg/g). The main sugars identified by gas chromatography were fructose, glucose, and sucrose, with small amounts of di- and trisaccharides. A high level of dietary fiber was detected (x = 13.7 ± 1.3 g/100 g). The main fatty acids detected corresponded to C18:2, C18:3, and C18:1 acids. The mineral elements showed a predominance of potassium, phosphorus, calcium, and magnesium. The pollen of Cistus ladaniferus was detected as the dominant pollen. Among the microbiological parameters, a high number of molds, total aerobic counts, and the presence of coliforms and StreptococciDof Lancefield were found. Aflatoxins were not detected.

    Keywords: Honeybee-collected pollen; composition; quality; microbiology; aflatoxins


     Author to whom correspondence should be addressed (fax, +34-3-7532607).

     Abstract published in Advance ACS Abstracts, January 1, 1997.

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