Table 182

Some Uses of Algin


1. As a thickening agent in toppings, pastry fillings, meringues, potato salad, canned foods, gravies, dry mixes, bakery jellies, icings, dietetic foods, flavored syrups, candies, puddings

2. As an emulsifier and suspension agent in soft drinks and concentrates, salad dressings, barbecue sauces, frozen-food batters

3. As a stabilizer in chocolate drinks, eggnog, ice cream, sherbets, sour cream, coffee creamers, party dips, buttermilk, dairy toppings, milkshakes, marshmallows


1. Provides better ink and varnish holdout on paper surfaces; provides uniformity of ink acceptance, reduction in coating weight and improved holdout of oil, wax, and solvents in paperboard products. Makes improved coating for frozen food cartons

2. Used for coating greaseproof papers Textiles

1. Thickens print paste and improves dye dispersal. Reduces weaving time and eliminates damage to printing rolls or screens Pharmaceuticals and Cosmetics

1. As a thickening agent in weight-control products, cough syrups, suppositories, ointments, toothpastes, shampoos, eye makeup

2. As a smoothing agent in lotions, creams, lubricating jellies. Binder in manufacture of pills. Blood anticoagulant

3. As a suspension agent for liquid vitamins, mineral oil emulsions, antibiotics. Gelling agent for facial beauty masks, dental impression compounds

Industrial Uses

1. Used in manufacture of acidic cleaners, films, seed coverings, welding rod flux, ceramic glazes, boiler compounds (prevents minerals from precipitating on tubes), leather finishes, sizing, various rubber compounds (e.g., automobile tires, electric insulation, foam cushions, baby pants), cleaners, polishes, latex paints, adhesives, tapes, patching plaster, crack fillers, wall joint cement, fiberglass battery plates, insecticides, resins, tungsten filaments for light bulbs, digestible surgical gut (disappears by time incision is healed), oil well-drilling mud. Used in clarification of beet sugar. Mixed with alfalfa and grain meals in dairy and poultry feeds


1. Helps create creamier beer foam with smaller, longer-lasting bubbles

This large seaweed is known to grow up to 92 meters (300 feet) or more long and sometimes grows at the rate of 3 to 6 decimeters (1 to 2 feet) per day. The basal meristems allow for blade regeneration and, accordingly, make the giant kelps valuable resources. Specially equipped oceangoing vessels (Fig. 18.27) harvest the kelp by mowing off the top meter (3 feet) of growth, taking the chopped material aboard, then transferring it to processing centers onshore where it is extracted and refined.

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