EXTRACTION AND STABILIZATION OF ALOE VERA GEL FROM THE PLANT
Aloe vera (Aloe barbadensis miller) is a perennial plant of
Liliacea with turgid green leaves joined at the stem in a rosette pattern, Aloe vera leaves are formed by thick epidermis (skin) covered curticle surrounding the mesophyll, which can be differentiated into chlorenchyma cells and thinner walled cells forming the parenchyma cells (filet). The parenchyma cells contain a transparent mucilaginous jelly which is referred to as aloe Vera gel. Potential use of aloe vera products often involves some type of processing example heating, dehydrating and grinding processing may cause irreversible modification to the polysaccharides affecting their original structure which may promote important changes in the proposed physiological and pharmaceutical properties of these constituents.
However, aloe vera jel juice was not very popular due to their laxative effect and majority of them contained absolutely no active muscilaginous polysaccharides or acemannan. Colour changes have little relation to the therapeutic effectiveness of the stabilized gel and it is totally unacceptable in some products. An efficient processing technique was used to improve product quality, to preserve and maintain almost all of the bioactive chemical entities naturally present in the Aloe Vera leave during processing. The production process of aloe vera leaves involves crushing, grinding or pressing of the entire leaf of the aloe vera plant to produce an aloe vera gel juice followed by various steps of filtration and stabilization of the gel. The resulting solution is then incorporated in or mixed with other solution or agents to produce a pharmaceutical, costmetic or food product.
1.1 AIM OF STUDY
To extract Aloe vera gel from the plant and stabilize using sodum benzoate, citric acid and lime.
Aloe vera is a succulent plant of the lilly family native to the cape of good hope and growing wild in much of Africa and Madagascar. Commercial growers cultivate it in the Caribbean, the Mediterranean, Japan and the USA. It produces a ring of dagger shaped fleshy leaves that grow up from the base of plant. Each Aloe vera plant grow up to nearly 2kg in weight. It is from the leaf that the soothing aloe vera jel is extracted.
The Aloe vera plant is drought resistant and grows mainly in subtropical desert like savanna. When the leaves are cut the plant can close off it’s cell to retain fluid. Aloe vera can grow to 20meters in height but usually grows only to about 1.5meters. each plant has about 15leaves and blooms intermittently. It produces erect spikes of drooping yellow, orange or red tubular flowers on the woody stem