2006 Annual Report
This report serves to document research performed under a Cooperative Research and Development Agreement between ARS and an industrial partner. Additional details of research can be found in the report for the parent project 5325-41000-060-00D, "New Technologies to Process Value-Added, Healthy Foods from Fruits and Vegetables". A novel infrared dry blanching technology that does not require addition of steam or water in the blanching process was invented by researchers in the Processed Foods Research Unit at WRRC, Albany, CA, in collaboration with an industrial partner. A patent was filed on this invention which can be used to produce many kinds of value-added dried, refrigerated, frozen and dehydrofrozen fruit, and vegetable products in an energy-efficient method which preserves the nutrition and quality of the final products. Ultimately these novel products can assist consumers in meeting the USDA dietary guidelines for fruit and vegetable consumption. This CRADA with an industrial partner is ongoing to test this technology's potential as an alternative to freeze-drying for dehydrated and partially-dehydrated strawberries and bananas for inclusion in breakfast cereals and snacks in support of NP 306’s Component 2, "New Processes, New Uses, and Value-Added Foods".