Potential of Agro-residues as Sources of Bioactive Compounds

  • Neha Babbar
  • Harinder Singh OberoiEmail author


Agricultural residues offer tremendous potential as sources of bioactive compounds. In most of the cases, the wasted by-products can present similar or even higher contents of bioactive compounds than the final product does. One of the most important sources of bioactive compounds present in the agricultural residues is the polyphenolic compounds. In addition, dietary ascorbates, tocopherol and carotenoids, which are present in agricultural residues, are well known for their antioxidant potential. The toxicity of synthetic antioxidants such as butylated hydroxyanisole, butylated hydroxytoluene and propyl gallates and also the growing interest of consumers in the security of nutritional additives has fostered research on natural sources and the screening of raw materials for identifying new and safe sources of antioxidants. Agro-processing industry generates large amounts of by-products such as peels, seeds, stones, trimmings, pods and pulp in different steps of processing. The processing of agricultural commodity leaves behind a substantial amount of residues which contains major classes of bioactive compounds, viz. flavonoids, hydroxycinnamic acid derivatives, phenolic acids, tannins ascorbates, carotenoids, tocopherols, phytosterols and arabinoxylans. Due to lack of facilities to harness the potential of these valuable by-products, such residues are disposed off in open spaces or municipal bins leading to environmental pollution problems. Effective utilization of these by-products for the production of antioxidants can help prevent pollution problems and offer new sources of bioactive compounds. This chapter presents the general aspects about natural antioxidants, extraction of bioactive compounds (mainly polyphenols) from agricultural residues, identification and characterization of major active compounds and potential use of these compounds in food and pharmaceutical industry.


Phenolic Compound Bioactive Compound Ellagic Acid Supercritical Fluid Extraction Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Central Institute of Post Harvest Engineering and TechnologyLudhianaIndia

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