- Consumers’ demand for healthier foods that retain their original nutritional properties;
- The shift to ready-to-eat and convenience foods which require little further processing by consumers; and
- Consumers’ preference for more ‘natural’ food that requires less of processing and fewer chemical preservatives. Hurdle technology provides a framework for combining a number of milder preservation techniques to achieve an enhanced level of product safety and stability.
Types of hurdles
Aseptic packaging, electromagnetic energy ( microwave, radio frequency, pulsed magnetic fields, high electric fields ), high temperatures ( blanching, pasteurization, sterilization, evaporation, extrusion, baking, frying), ionizing radiation, low temperature ( chilling, freezing ), modified atmospheres, packaging films ( including active packaging, edible coatings ), photodynamic inactivation, ultra-high temperature, ultrasonication, ultraviolet radiation.
Carbon dioxide, ethanol, lactic acid, lactoperoxidase, low pH, low Eh, low aw, Maillard reaction products, organic acids, oxygen, ozone, phenols, phosphates, salt, smoking, sodium nitrite/nitrate, sodium or potassium sulphite, spices and herbs, surface treatment agents.
Antibiotics, bacteriocins, competitive flora, protective cultures.
Reduced water activity
Drying, curing, conserving
Acid addition or formation
Reduced redox potential
Removal of oxygen or addition of ascorbate
Competitive flora such as microbial fermentation
Sorbates, sulphites, nitrites
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