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J Food Sci. 2011 Oct;76(8):S492-8. doi: 10.1111/j.1750-3841.2011.02371.x.

The effectiveness of ozone and acidulant treatments in extending the refrigerated shelf life of fresh-cut potatoes.

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1
Dept. of Food Science & Human Nutrition, Univ. of Maine, 5735 Hitchner Hall, Orono, ME 04469-5735, USA. beth.calder@maine.edu

Abstract

The objective of the study was to determine the effectiveness of acidulant dip treatments (with or without aqueous ozone) to reduce enzymatic browning and to extend the shelf life of fresh-cut potato slices during refrigerated storage (4 °C) for 28 d. Potato slices subjected to aqueous ozone (2 ppm) had significantly (P≤ 0.05) higher L-values and lower a-values, but ozone did not appear to have any effect on aerobic plate counts (APCs) or polyphenol oxidase (PPO) activity. NatureSeal (NS) and sodium acid sulfate (SAS) were the most effective acidulant treatments in reducing browning (significantly [P≤ 0.05] higher L-values, lower a-values, and browning index values) regardless of ozone treatment. NS and SAS also had lower PPO activity compared to other treatments on days 0 and 28, and significantly (P≤ 0.05) lower APCs (≤2.00 log CFU/g) over refrigerated storage. Therefore, the SAS treatment was comparable to NS, a commercially available product, and showed promise as an effective antibrowning dip to reduce browning and spoilage in fresh-cut potato products. Practical Application:  A 1% SAS dip treatment which included 1% citric and 1% ascorbic acid was found to be an effective antibrowning dip for fresh-cut potatoes along with NatureSeal®'s PS-10, compared to other treatments. They were both effective in maintaining low microbial counts over refrigerated storage. Additionally, aqueous ozone washes (2 ppm) showed significant benefits to reduce browning; however, ozone did not affect microbial counts or PPO enzyme activity. Therefore, the SAS treatment could have potential use in the fruit and vegetable industry to reduce browning and spoilage in fresh-cut potato products.

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