Demonstration of New, Efficient Infrared Drying and Blanching Technologies for Fruits and Vegetables
Healthy Processed Foods Research
Project Number: 5325-41000-063-13
Start Date: Sep 07, 2011
End Date: Dec 31, 2013
The main objectives of this proposed project are to quantify and demonstrate the energy and water saving capability, process efficiency and product quality improvement of Infrared Radiation (IR) heating technology for processing fruits and vegetables. The demonstration will focus on two novel applications of SIRFD and SIRDBD to various fruit and vegetable products including sliced strawberries, carrots, potatoes and zucchinis. The benefits of using these new IR processing technologies will be quantified, demonstrated, transferred to industry and publicized in both scientific and popular press, and media. The full scale IR processing unit will also be used to develop novel drying processes for other shelf-stable fruit and vegetable products.
The new processing technologies will be demonstrated at two different processing facilities. During the demonstrations, energy consumption and product quality will be measured, recorded, statistically analyzed and compared with the current processing methods. Based on the results obtained from the demonstrations, the operational and design parameters for commercial scale IR heating devices for specific applications will be optimized. Dissemination of the information will be realized through progress reports, publications and on-site seminars.