How to Use a Bread Improver

A lot of baking comes down to just measuring your ingredients correctly because the recipes are based on simple chemistry. If you get the measurements right, things should work out OK. Yeast breads are the exception, and they’re notoriously cranky. Both home and commercial bakers are highly motivated to make their bread work every time, and sometimes, the answer is to use a bread improver.

How Yeast Breads Work

Yeast breads come in all different shapes, sizes and textures, but they all harness the same handful of natural processes. The rise, or leavening, comes from yeast. The yeast digests naturally-occurring sugars in the flour you use, as well as any other nutrients the recipe happens to provide, and turns them into small quantities of alcohol and carbon dioxide gas.

Those tiny amounts of carbon dioxide would just bubble up and escape from a lot of substances, but wheat flour – and, to a lesser extent, rye – is different. It contains proteins that bond to each other when they’re moistened, forming stretchy, sticky strands called gluten. Gluten acts like millions of tiny balloons inside your bread dough, trapping those bubbles of gas as they expand in the heat of the oven. This is what makes your bread bake up to a light, fluffy texture.

That’s the theory, anyway. In practice, things are chancier, because yeasts are living organisms, which makes them temperamental. You’ll also find that bread behaves differently depending on the day’s temperature and humidity and the natural variations between one batch or brand of flour and the next. To smooth out some of that variability and the guesswork that goes along with it, some bakers turn to a variety of bread improvers.

Bread Improver and Dough Improver

There’s a fine line between what constitutes a bread improver and a simple, normal ingredient. Your favorite sandwich bread might add a bit of milk or oil, for example, which gives a softer crumb. That’s not necessarily an improver. For practical purposes, you could think of an improver as an ingredient you add primarily for its impact on how the bread dough performs rather than for its culinary virtues.

There are several types of improvers on the market, mostly aimed at commercial bakers. Some ingredients, such as ascorbic acid, improve the strength of the gluten and therefore the rise of the bread. Small quantities of soybean or fava bean flour can have the same effect. Yeast nutrients make the yeast livelier and enhance their leavening ability. “Reducing agents” like cysteine and metabisulphite make a stretchier dough, which is great for pizza. Emulsifiers help keep your bread soft and keep it fresher longer.

Not all dough improvers are automatically considered bread improvers. A class of enzymes called proteases, the same ones used in meat tenderizers, are a good example. They’ll weaken your gluten, which is a negative with bread, but a real positive with crackers and many other baked goods where a tender texture or minimal rise is desirable.

Using Bread Improvers in Home Baking

Most of these additives are aimed squarely at commercial bakers, but there are a few you can experiment with at home. Ascorbic acid is better known as vitamin C, so you can grind up a tablet and dissolve a pinch of it in your wet ingredients to boost gluten development. You can also add a spoonful of bean flour or diastatic malt powder to your dry ingredients and see how that affects your gluten.

Another option is simply to boost your bread’s gluten formation with the addition of a high-gluten flour, usually sold as “vital wheat gluten.” This increases ordinary all-purpose flour to become the equivalent of commercial bread flour, and it can give your bread better rise.

There are also emulsifiers suitable for home bakers. The simplest is an egg yolk, which contains naturally occurring lecithin and adds richness to your dough as well. You can also purchase soy lecithin at bulk stores in liquid or granule form. Adding the liquid to your wet ingredients or dissolving the granules in your wet ingredients will have the same effect on your dough as an egg yolk, but without the added fat.

Fred Decker is a trained chef, former restaurateur and prolific freelance writer, with a special interest in all things related to food and nutrition. His work has appeared online on major sites including, and the websites of the Houston Chronicle and San Francisco Chronicle; and offline in Canada’s Foodservice & Hospitality magazine and his local daily newspaper. He was educated at Memorial University of Newfoundland and the Northern Alberta Institute of Technology.


Select Your Product Group:

Select Your State:

Pasta & NoodlesCoatings & BattersSnacks & CerealsBrownies, Bars & SliceRolls, buns & baguettes

Accessing leading technology, MAURI’s Improvers are best in class. MAURI’s range includes Improvers for dough conditioning, dough strengthening, dough relaxants, crumb softening and crumb whitening. Technology for tailored bakery solutions.


MAURI Boost is an enzyme-based, dough conditioner designed to reduce gluten addition by up to 50% and improve dough strength and product resilience. Versatile across a wide range of baking applications, conditions and processes.

Applications:Rolls, buns & baguettes

Bread and Bun Improvers

All Purpose Bread Improver

Multi-purpose improver for a wide range of bakery applications to impact volume, texture and crumb softness. Soy based blend with a 1% application rate.

XL Improver

Multi-purpose improver for a wide range of bakery applications to impact volume, texture and crumb softness. Soy based blend optimised for QLD flours with a 1% application rate.


Improver that provides good dough properties, loaf volume, and soft white crumb for tinned breads in industrial bakeries. Soy based blend with a 1% application rate.
^RSPO Certified to the Mass Balance Supply Chain Model.

Soft Specialty Improver

Improver that delivers soft white crumb, excellent volume in high top loaves and helps retain its freshness for longer. Soy based blend with a 1% application rate.

Crusty Improver

Improver that delivers high volume loaves with a superior crust and a defined split. Soy based blend with a 1% application rate.

CL Supa Soft Improver

Improver that provides excellent dough handling, volume, texture and softness over a prolonged shelf life. Soy based, emulsifier-free improver that contributes to a clean label declaration.* Used at 0.5% application rate.
*Dependant on other ingredients used.

CL Supa Soft Improver**

Improver that provides excellent dough handling, volume, texture and softness over a prolonged shelf life. Soy based, emulsifier-free improver that contributes to a clean label declaration.* Used at 0.5% application rate.
*Dependant on other ingredients used.
**This is a made-to-order product, please speak to your Account Executive for lead times.

CL Bread Improver

Improver that delivers good dough handling, volume, texture and softness. Emulsifer-free improver with no added soy that contributes to a clean label declaration.* Used at 0.5% application rate.
*Dependant on other ingredients used.

Universal Softener MB^

Dough conditioner that improves crumb structure with additional softness and freshness. Should be used in conjunction with an improver. 0.5% application rate.
^RSPO Certified to the Mass Balance Supply Chain Model.

CL Premium Softener

Premium softener that improves crumb structure and gives extended fresh keeping qualities. Designed for commercial manufacture of various baked products. May contribute to a clean label declaration*, used at 0.5% application rate. Should be used in conjunction with an improver.
*Dependant on other ingredients used.

Relax Mix

Dough conditioner that assists with dough development and sheeting and can help reduce mixing and resting time. Should be used in conjunction with an improver. 0.1-0.5% application rate.

Relax Mix**

Dough conditioner that assists with dough development and sheeting and can help reduce mixing and resting time. Should be used in conjunction with an improver. 0.1-0.5% application rate.
**This is a made-to-order product, please speak to your Account Executive for lead times.

White M Premix

Bread concentrate containing the salt and improver system that helps save time weighing up ingredients in small production runs. Contains preservatives and extends mould-free shelf life. 4% application rate.

White M Premix (Preservative Free)

Bread concentrate for a soft crumb and crisp crust with no preservative. Includes improver and salt, used at 4% application rate.

M&M Bread Concentrate

Bread concentrate for a soft crumb and crisp crust. Includes improver and salt, used at 4% application rate.

Bread Improvers, Conditioners & Concentrates – Australia

We blend our passion for baking with our technical expertise to create solutions for our customers that delivers real value. In today’s competitive environment, consistent product quality is essential. Our products will give you the confidence that your baking is at its best.

Bread Improver is a flour-based mixture of several components that enable the rapid development of a dough through to the finished baked product by reducing the time required to achieve a comparable result from the traditional long fermented doughs.

Dough Conditioners are ingredients that possess the ability to strengthen the gluten structure of the dough. This results in improved machinability and gas retention, thereby improving the volume, grain, and symmetry of the final loaf.

Crumb Softeners are used in bakeries to extend the shelf life of breads by retarding and/or reducing the rate of crumb firming. During baking, the starch in dough gelatinises and some of the amylose migrates into the water phase in the dough structure. Amylopectin remains within the starch granules, but it swells and loses its crystallinity.

During cooling of the bread, the amylopectin recrystallises causing firming of the bread crumb enabling the loaf to be sliced once it has cooled to below 35°C.

Staling of bread occurs as the result of the slower recrystallisation of the amylopectin over several days and its progress can be reduced by the addition of compounds such as GMS. This effect is produced regardless of whether or not the bread contains shortening.

Commonly used emulsifiers for bread making are:
SSL – Sodium Stearoyl Lactylate
CSL – Calcium Stearoyl Lactylate
GMS – Glycerol Monostearate
DATEM – Diacetyl Tartaric Acid Esters of Monoglycerides


Generally, anything that is added to a basic bread recipe that affects the taste or time of production of the bread could be called a bread improver. Other
terms for such ingredients can be improving agents, bread improvers, dough conditioners and dough improvers. These terms are also used to describe a broad
range of natural or chemical additives that speed up the process of dough development. There are four main groups of bread improvers: bleaching agents,
oxidizing and reducing agents and enzymes.

Bleaching agents, when added to flour, make it appear whiter. Flour is yellowish in color when its freshly milled and white color wakes it more
esthetically pleasing. It also oxidizes the surfaces of the flour grains and helps with developing of gluten which will later make the dough rise better.
That gives higher loaf volume and finer grain of the bread. The most used bleaching agents are: benzoyl peroxide, calcium peroxide, nitrogen dioxide,
chlorine, chlorine dioxide, azodicarbonamide and oxygen from the atmosphere, used during natural aging of flour. Some methods of flour bleaching, like use
of chlorine, bromates, and peroxides, are not allowed in the European Union.

Oxidizing agents are added to flour to increase development of gluten in flour. When made at home, bread is naturally aged through exposure to the
atmosphere but in the industrial conditions adding of oxidizing agents saves time and creates stronger dough. The most usually oxidizing agents are:
azodicarbonamide (E927), carbamide (E927b), potassium bromate (E924), ascorbic acid, phosphatesmalted barley and potassium iodate. Some flour bleaching
agents also work as oxidizing agents.

Reducing agents are added to break the protein network of flour and with that to weaken it. This reduces mixing time, reduces dough elasticity, reduces
proofing time, and makes dough easier for machine processing. The most used reducing agents are: L-cysteine, fumaric acid, sodium bisulfate, non-leavened
yeast and ascorbic acid.

Added enzymes also improve processing characteristics. Mostly are added amylases, proteases and lipoxygenases. Amylases break down the starch in flours
into simple sugars which helps yeast ferment quickly. One of the natural sources of amylase is malt. Proteases degrade some of the gluten and improve
extensibility of the dough. Lipoxygenases oxidize the flour. Yeast can naturally produce both amylases and proteases but additional quantities are added to
make production quicker.

Some other ingredients that are added to the dough are: monoglycerides and diglycerides (which are added to help to mix ingredients), ammonium chloride
(which work as as a yeast nutrient), DATEM (diacetyl tartaric acid ester of mono- and diglycerides or E472e; strengthens the dough by building a strong
gluten network) and calcium salts such as calcium iodate (to work as and an oxidant). Natural ingredients that are added are sprouted- or malted-grain
flours, soy, milk, wheat germ, potatoes, lecithin and gluten. Some of these ingredients are considered emulsifiers. They help to disperse fat more evenly
throughout the dough which helps to trap more of the carbon dioxide produced by yeast to not escape to atmosphere. This produces a fine grain, larger loafs
and improved slicing.

What is Bread Improver ?

Bread Improvers  (also called improving agents, Flour treatment agents, dough conditioners and dough improvers) are food additives combined with flour to improve baking functionality. Flour treatment agents are used to increase the speed of dough rising and to improve the strength and workability of the dough.

Bread improver is a blend of ingredients that activate the gluten and help produce gas which assists and improves the processes of dough kneading and fermentation. The result is a lighter loaf with better texture and keeping qualities. They are used more often in grain mixes or bread with the addition of fruit, seeds or nuts to a loaf to give strength and volume.

Typically a bread improver contains minute quantities of

Enzyme (Amylase most commonly used)

An enzyme is a protein that promotes a biochemical reaction, it is naturally found in the germ of wheat or malted wheat flour and is extracted from sprouted barley. It is dried, ground and added to Australian bread making flours. It is naturally present in Australian flour but not at sufficient levels for good bread making.

Amylase enables the yeast to operate effectively, without requiring added sugar. It is a food source to encourage the growth of yeast to increase fermentation.

Emulsifiers help condition and strengthen the dough, improve crumb whiteness, retain moisture, soften crumb texture and control fat crystallisation. The improved water retention improves the keeping qualities of a loaf.

481: made from mixing lactic and stearic acid together.

made from mixing glycerol and tartaric acid.491: Made from Stearic Acid and Sorbitol (derived from glucose – fruit source) a processing ingredient during manufacturing of our yeast.

You can produce bread without bread improver by adding a little sugar and oil in its place. Not as complex as a bread improver. The sugar acts as a food source for the yeast to encourage fermentation, the oil will help to improve loaf volume and keeping qualities. Add 3tsp of sugar per 1kg of flour and 30mL-40mL of vegetable oil (and reduce the water by the same quantity).

Soya flour is made from roasted and ground soybeans; it is used in a minute amount (approx 1.5g/600g of bread mix) to improve texture, crumb brightness and also to help make the dough more extensible.

Bread improver is a term, generally used by the bakery industry, for a group of chemical substances natural or synthetic in nature which can improve the mixing properties of dough, product characteristics, and retard staling of the bakery products. Deepak Mudgil and Sheweta Barak discuss about bread improver in detail.

Table of Contents

Nowadays, bakery products have become an important part of our daily diet hence improvement in the quality of bakery products is in great demand. To improve the quality bakery industry often uses certain additives such as stabilizers, emulsifiers, and antistaling agents. Emulsifiers are commonly added to commercial bakery products to improve dough handling characteristics and bread quality. Some commonly used emulsifiers are diacetyl tartaric acid esters of mono-diglycerides and lecithin, which are also known as dough improvers, and monoacylglycerols, which are considered as antistaling agents or crumb softeners (Stampfli 1995).

Stabilizers or food hydrocolloids are biopolymers used as functional ingredients in the bakery industry. In the baked goods, hydrocolloids have been used for retarding the staling and for improving the quality of the fresh products as they can induce structural changes in the main components of the wheat dough system. Hydrocolloids can act as bread improver because they can increase water retention and loaf volume and thus finally decreases the firmness and starch retrogradation which further retarded the staling of bread (Mudgil et al. 2011).

Hydrocolloids are used either alone or in combination to achieve specific synergies between their respective functional properties. They can minimize the negative effects of the freezing and frozen storage due to their hydrophilic nature which prevents the growth of ice crystals during frozen storage of products, and moisture migration from the substrate to the outer surface, which improves the freeze/thaw stability.

The presence of hydrocolloids influenced melting, gelatinization, fragmentation, and retrogradation processes in starch molecules which can affect pasting properties, dough rheological behavior and finally the bread staling. An improvement in wheat dough stability during proofing can be obtained by the addition of sodium alginate, k-carrageenan and xanthan gum. Carboxymethylcellulose (CMC), hydroxypropylmethylcellulose (HPMC) and alginate can be added as anti-staling agents that retarded crumb firming (Guarda et al., 2004).

Guar gum as bread improver

It is a galactomannan obtained from the seed of a leguminous plant Cyamopsis tetragonolobus. An aqueous solution of guar gum is highly viscous at low concentration and useful in thickening, stabilization and water-binding applications (Mudgil et al. 2011). In bakery industry, guar gum is used to improve the mixing properties of the dough, to extend the shelf life of bakery products through moisture retention and to prevent syneresis in frozen foods. Ribotta et al. (2001) reported that the addition of guar gum in frozen dough produced bread with a higher volume, a more open crumb structure with a higher percentage of gas cells than those prepared without it. Guar gum may also delay bread staling by softening effect likely due to possible inhibition of the amylopectin retrogradation as it preferentially binds to starch which can be explained by an effect on the formation of amylose network avoiding the spongy matrix creation.

Locust bean gum

Locust bean gum (LBG) is a natural galactomannan extracted from the seeds of the carob tree (Ceratonia siliqua L.). It is composed of galactose and mannose units like guar gum but gives less viscous solutions as compared to guar gum at the same concentration. Its application in bakery products results in higher baked product yields; it improves the final texture and adds viscosity in the dough. Furthermore, it appears effective in lowering serum lipids and in the dietary treatment of diabetics (Mandala et al. 2007).

Gum Acacia as bread improver

It is a hydrocolloid derived from the dried gummy exudates of the stems and branches of Acacia senegal. It is water-soluble in nature and resistant to human digestive tract secretion. It is highly branched in nature which gives rise to compact molecules with a relatively small hydrodynamic volume and as a consequence gum solutions become viscous only at high concentrations. It was demonstrated that the addition of gum acacia increased the loaf volume and bread characteristics via water phase management.

Carrageenan as dough improver

It is a sulphated polymer extracted from certain red algae. When it is used as a dough improver in bakery industry, has an ability to improve the specific volume of the bread due to its interactions with gluten proteins (Leon et al. 2000). The presence of this hydrocolloid in the bread dough increased the moisture content in the final bread.


Alginates are a polyuronic saccharides isolated from the cell walls of a number of brown seaweed species. Alginates are used to stabilize bakery toppings and icings, as well as to prevent the sticking of products to wrapping paper. Other bakery applications in which alginates are used include meringues and fruit or chiffon pie fillings. The addition of these compounds provides bakery cream with freeze-thaw stability, reduced syneresis, improves shelf life, and moisture retention in bread and cake mixes.

Xanthan gum

Xanthan gum is an extracellular polysaccharide secreted by the bacterium, Xanthomonas campestris. This hydrocolloid contributes smoothness, air incorporation and retention, and recipe tolerance to batters for cakes, muffins, biscuits and bread mixes. Baked goods have increased volume and moisture, higher crumb strength, less crumbling and greater resistance to transport damage. At low concentrations provides storage stability and water-binding capacity. Its pseudoplastic behavior is important in bakery products during dough preparation, i.e. pumping, kneading, and moulding. It prevents lump formation during kneading and improves dough homogeneity. It induces cooking and cooling stability in wheat flour and improves the freeze/thaw stability of starch-thickened frozen foods (Alvarez et al. 2008). It also improves the cohesion of starch granules, thus providing a structure to these products.

It is used to increase water binding during baking and storage and thus prolongs the shelf life of baked goods and refrigerated dough. The addition of Xanthan gum into a frozen dough formulation can strengthen the dough by forming a strong interaction with the flour proteins. It also increases water absorption and the ability of the dough to retain gas, increasing the specific volume of the final bread and the water activity of the crumb (Selomulyo and Zhou 2007). It can also be used in soft baked goods for the replacement of egg white content without affecting appearance and taste. It is also used in prepared cake mixes to control rheology and gas entrainment and to impart high baking volume.

Hydroxypropyl methylcellulose

HPMC is a water-soluble fiber that has been used in food for decades to enhance the manufacturing process and improve food product qualities. This compound is obtained by the addition of methyl and hydroxypropyl groups to the cellulose chain. The etherification of hydroxyl groups of the cellulose increases its water solubility and also confers some affinity for the non-polar phase in doughs.

Hence, in a multiphase system like bread dough, this bifunctional behaviour allows the dough to retain its uniformity and to protect and maintain the emulsion stability during breadmaking (Selomulyo and Zhou 2007). It was also demonstrated that using HPMC dough improver in breadmaking improves its quality in terms of loaf volume, moisture content, crumb texture, and sensorial properties. In addition, this hydrocolloid is a good antistaling agent for retarding the crumb hardening. Its effect should be attributed to its water retention capacity, and possible inhibition of the amylopectin retrogradation.

Carboxymethyl cellulose

CMC is a cellulose derivative with carboxymethyl groups bound to some of the hydroxyl groups present in the glucopyranose monomers that form cellulose backbone (Selomulyo and Zhou, 2007). CMC is used, as dough improver, in baked goods mostly to retain moisture, to improve the body or mouthfeel of the products, to control sugar and ice crystallization, to protection against leavening losses in cake mixes, to improving volume and uniformity of baked products, and to increase the shelf life of cereal products.

Diacetylated tartaric acid esters of mono- and diglycerides of fatty acids (DATEM)

These are anionic oil-in-water emulsifiers that are used as dough strengtheners. They are the most important emulsifier used for bakery ingredients, for the production of bread and small baked items. When added to the dough, they improve mixing tolerance, gas retention, the resistance of the dough to collapse, improves loaf volume and endow the crumb with a resilient texture, fine grain as well as good slicing properties. It is also reported that DATEM formed hydrogen bonds with starch and glutamine is capable to promote the aggregation of gluten proteins in dough by binding to the protein hydrophobic surface.

This results in baked goods with high volume and good crumb structure which are characteristics of high quality. Added to this, the emulsifier also ensures the machinability of dough during make-up. Moreover, mono-glycerides of fatty acids and starch may form “inclusion compounds” which prevent the recrystallisation of starch (retrogradation) in the finished baked good. This retrogradation is the main cause of staling.


These are a group of naturally occurring, complex phospholipids. They have been reported to reduce staling and to have the advantage of being amenable to modification for specific applications. They are also used in baguette and other crusty bread to improve dough gas retention to a degree and contribute to crust formation. The main commercial source of lecithin is plant seed especially soybean. Soya lecithin hydrolysate form complex effectively with starch amylose and retarded wheat starch crystallization due to its content of lysophospho-lipids. In addition, lecithins slow down the amylopectin crystallization because of their high content in lysophospholipids. This may explain why the effect brought about by enriched lecithins in lysophospholipids presented a better antistaling capacity (Azizi et al. 2003).


These are the most widely used fat-based emulsifiers in bread and other food systems. These substances can be applied to delay staling and as crumb softeners in bakery products. The generally accepted theory about the mechanism by which crumb softeners retard the firming process is based on the ability of monoglycerides to form complexes with amylose. It is reported that this amylose monoglycerol inclusion complex is insoluble in water. Therefore, the part of the amylose which is complexed by the monoglycerides does not participate in the gel formation which normally occurs with the starch in the dough during baking. Therefore, upon cooling, the complexed amylose will not recrystallize and will not contribute to the staling of the bread crumb (Stampfli 1995).

Glycerol mono-stearate (GMS)

It is best used in the hydrated form but can be added as a powder. It does not greatly contribute to dough gas retention of bread volume but does act as a crumb softener through its proven anti-staling effect. It was also reported that did not alter the water absorption capacity significantly, but marginally improved the stability of the dough (Maga & Ponte, 1975).


  • Alvarez, M. D., Fernández, C., & Canet, W. (2010). Oscillatory rheological properties of fresh and frozen/thawed mashed potatoes as modified by different cryoprotectants. Food and Bioprocess Technology, 3(1), 55-70.
  • Azizi, M. H., Rajabzadeh, N., & Riahi, E. (2003). Effect of mono-diglyceride and lecithin on dough rheological characteristics and quality of flat bread. LWT-Food Science and Technology, 36(2), 189-193.
  • Brownlee, I. A., Allen, A., Pearson, J. P.,
  • Dettmar, P. W., Havler, M. E., Atherton, M. R., & Onsøyen, E. (2005). Alginate as a source of dietary fiber. Critical reviews in food science and nutrition, 45(6), 497-510.
  • León, A. E., Ribotta, P. D., Ausar, S. F., Fernández, C., Landa, C. A., & Beltramo, D. M. (2000). Interactions of different carrageenan isoforms and flour components in breadmaking. Journal of agricultural and food chemistry, 48(7), 2634-2638.
  • Maga, J. A., & Ponte, J. G. (1975). Bread staling. Critical Reviews in Food Science & Nutrition, 5(4), 443-486.
  • Mandala, I., Karabela, D., & Kostaropoulos, A. (2007). Physical properties of breads containing hydrocolloids stored at low temperature. I. Effect of chilling. Food Hydrocolloids, 21(8), 1397-1406.
  • Mudgil, D., Barak, S., & Khatkar, B. S. (2011). Guar gum: processing, properties and food applications–A Review. Journal of Food Science and Technology, doi 10.1007/s13197-011-0522-x
  • Ribotta, P.D., Leon, A.E., and Añon, M.C. 2001. Effect of freezing and frozen storage of doughs on bread quality. J. Agric. Food Chem. 49:913–918.
  • Ribotta, P. D., Perez, G. T., Leon, A. E., & Anon, M. C. (2004). Effect of emulsifier and guar gum on micro structural, rheological and baking performance of frozen bread dough. Food Hydrocolloids, 18(2), 305-313.
  • Sidhu, J. P. S., & Bawa, A. S. (2004). Effect of gum acacia incorporation on the bread-making performance of Punjab wheat. International Journal of Food Properties, 7(2), 175-183.
  • Stampfli, L., & Nersten, B. (1995). Emulsifiers in bread making. Food Chemistry, 52(4), 353-360.

A bread improver is a flour-based blend of several components with specific functional properties designed to modify dough characteristics and give quality attributes to bread. Bread improvers are mostly made from a combination of enzymes in addition to various emulsifiers, soya flour and malt flour for their dough conditioning and improving properties.

Bread improvers have a range of functional benefits; they can enable the rapid development of a dough through to the finished baked product by reducing the time required to achieve a comparable result from the traditional long fermented doughs of the past.

The Function of Bread Improvers

There are 2 primary functions of bread improvers in dough:

Stimulate & Promote Gas Production by the Yeast.

Carbon dioxide is formed in a dough when the available sugars are broken down by various enzymes. Bread improvers promote the continuous and constant production of gas throughout the fermentation period until the yeast activity is stopped by the high temperatures in the baking oven.

Aids in Gas Retention.

Bread improvers are manufactured for the many styles of dough making and mixing equipment in use today.

Bread improvers rapidly modify the gluten structure in a dough, to produce a matrix so that the minimum amount of gas can be retained and hence assist the expansion or leavening of the dough.

Bread improvers may also carry within them a blend of enzymes that assist in the gluten matrix modification as well as yeast foods or sources of nitrogen for the yeast to use. It is important for the baker to be aware of the differences between bread improvers as one used successfully in a particular application may encourage too much softening or strengthening of the gluten matrix when used in another. This could lead to major and costly problems in the bakery.

Once the correct bread improver has been selected for an application, it must be used at the correct usage rate.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *