Thermal Processing of Canned Foods

Authored by: Arthur Teixeira

Handbook of Food Engineering

Print publication date:  January  2019
Online publication date:  December  2018

Print ISBN: 9781466563124
eBook ISBN: 9780429449734
Adobe ISBN:


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Thermal processing of canned foods has been one of the most widely used methods of food preservation during the twentieth century and has contributed significantly to the nutritional well-being of much of the world’s population. Thermal processing consists of heating food containers in pressurized retorts at specified temperatures for prescribed lengths of time. These process times are calculated on the basis of achieving sufficient bacterial inactivation in each container to comply with public health standards and to ensure that the probability of spoilage will be less than some minimum. Associated with each thermal process is always some degradation of heat-sensitive vitamins and other quality factors that is undesirable. Because of these quality and safety factors, great care is taken in the calculation of these process times and in the control of time and temperature during processing to avoid either under- or over-processing. The heat transfer considerations that govern the temperature profiles achieved within the container of food are critical factors in the determination of time and temperature requirements for sterilization.

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