A study was carried out to assess the possibility of quantitative determination of starch in starchy foodstuffs using crude amylase extracts from Ugandan sweet potato cultivars. Amylolytic activity in 18 sweet potato cultivars grown at Namulonge was evaluated and there was a significant variation of activity among cultivars tested. Crude extracts from cultivars 271, 120, 137, and Sowola had the highest amylolytic activities and titrated respectively 61590, 56310, 55740, and 55200 units of amylase activity per 100 g of fresh roots. Determination of starch in foodstuffs using crude amylolytic extracts from above sweet potato cultivars was generally sensitive enough and accurate. As far as the starch concentration was lower than 2 mg per sample of foodstuffs, there was no significant difference between routine methods and the method using sweet potato amylase extracts. The method was found to be cost effective compared to other routine and standard methods using commercial and imported enzymes and chemicals.
Nandutu A., Carasco J. and Hagenimana V. Using sweet potato analyse extracts for determination of starch in foodstuffs. Journal of Food Technology in Africa (2000) 5 (2) 66-69.