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Microbial production of commercial enzymes (Amylase and pectinase) from agrowaste

By Praveen Kumar Gupta, Gayatri R, Lavanya S

Department of Biotechnology, R V College of Engineering, Bangalore, Karnataka, India.

About 81.4 million tons of agricultural waste (AW) and 50 million tons of Fruit and vegetable waste (FVW) are discarded every year in India, which has a worth of US$ 483.9 million. Because of the size of FVW and AW generated, transformation of such waste to commercial products like enzymes (pectinase, amylase) becomes essential (Fig.1). Polysaccharide components (like cellulose, pectin and starch) present in FVW and AW can be utilized by means of microbial bio-processing for the production of commercial enzymes.


The market size for alpha amylase in the year 2018 is 278.23 million $ and it is estimated to reach 352.78 million $ by the year 2026 at a CAGR (Compound Annual Growth Rate). The market size for pectinase in the year 2019 is 30 million $ and it is estimated to reach 35.5 million $ by the year 2024 (Global Pectinase Market Research Report, 2019).

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Microbial production of amylase requires starch as a substrate. Cassava bagassecontains50% starch content. Other agro-wastes containing starch content are: corn bran (11.2%); corn fiber (15-20%);potato (67.5%); pineapple stem (11%);mango kernel (58%);jackfruit seeds (60-80%);avocado (27.5-29.8%) and banana peel(30%). Similarly, microbial production of pectinase requires pectin as a substrate. Agro-wastes containing pectin are: mango peel (10-15%), banana peel (4-6%) and apple pomace (18-19%). Submerged fermentation (SmF) and solid-state fermentation (SSF) are the two immensely used fermentation processes for the production of amylase and pectinase enzyme. SmF and SSF are applicable for bacteria, yeast and fungal species. The microbes reported for the production of amylase utilizing ago-waste are Aspergillus oryzae, Streptomyces sp., Bacillus subtilis, Rhizopus oryzae, Penicillium expansum. The microbes reported for the production of pectinase utilizing agro-waste are Erwinia sp., Streptomyces, Lactobacillus, Aspergillus niger, A. oryzae, Penicillium, Fusarium, Mucor, Neurospora crassa and Saccharomyces sp.


Amylases are involved in various applications like starch coating, deinking, biopolishing, desizing, modification of synthetic fibers, stain cleaning etc. Pectinases are involved in various applications like fruit juice clarification, coffee and tea fermentation, waste water treatment, bio-scouring of plant fibres etc.


Agro-waste can provide cheaper substrate platform for the production of commercial enzymes like amylase and pectinase. Utilization of agro waste can prevent breeding of disease-causing microbes and can also reduce soil and water pollution.


  1. Very informative . The information provided here is very much required in the present day scenario for sustainable environment


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