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Effect of pulsed light combined with an antibrowning pretreatment on quality of fresh cut apple

Gómez, P.L., García-Loredo, A., Nieto, A., Salvatori, D.M., Guerrero, S., Alzamora, S.M.
Innovative food science & emerging technologies 2012 v.16 pp. 102-112
apples, ascorbic acid, cold storage, color, consumer demand, dipping, food preservation, food processing, food research, hardness, heat treatment, juiciness, natural foods, rheological properties, shelf life, texture, ultrastructure
The aim of this study was to evaluate the effect of pulsed light (PL) combined with an anti-browning dipping (AD) (ascorbic acid plus CaCl₂ solution) and refrigerated storage on native microflora survival, color, rheological properties (oscillatory shear, creep/recovery and double-compression tests), texture, micro and ultrastructure of cut apple. The anti-browning dipping was effective in inhibiting browning on apple surface exposed up to a PL dose of 71.6J/cm². Native microflora counts in stored samples treated with AD+PL were lower than in non-treated apples. Changes in rheological properties due to treatments and/or storage were detected. They were mainly associated with a decrease in G′ and G″ and an increase in compliances J₀, J₁ and J₂ and modifications of TPA parameters. The assessors only evidenced a slight decrease in juiciness and crispness in stored and/or AD+PL treated apples. Changes in rheological properties and texture were partially correlated with structure features. INDUSTRIAL RELEVANCE: During the last few decades, research on food preservation has focused on meeting consumer demands for more natural and healthier food, with the interest moving from conventional thermal treatments toward “non-thermal” preservation techniques. Pulsed light is an emerging preservation factor that is being studied as an alternative process to decontaminate foods. This study contributes to evaluate the feasibility of pulsed light treatment to extend the shelf life of cut apple.