Forschungs- & Entwicklungsinformationsdienst der Gemeinschaft - CORDIS

Microwave sterilisation of foods

The project studied the application of advanced microwave heating technologies for the in-pack sterilisation of foods. Results showed that the alginate particle technique was suitable for the determination of the heat treatment received by the food during a microwave sterilisation process. Comparisons of process lethality, measured by both microbiological and conventional techniques were made in model and real foods. A technique for measuring the temperature dependence of the dielectric properties of foods was developed and data used within a series of computer simulation programs. These assisted in the development of batch and continuous microwave sterilisation pilot plant. The lack of control of temperature uniformity has been a major barrier to the widespread adoption of microwave food processing, but these models have identified the factors responsible for uniform heating.

The continuous microwave pilot plant was used to produce food samples, which were compared for sensory and nutritional quality with conventionally sterilised product. The results showed that microwave processing produced high quality and nutritionally wholesome foods.

Reported by

Campden & Chorleywood Food Research Association
Station Road
GL55 6LD Chipping Campden
United Kingdom
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