High pressure processing (HPP) is a method of preserving and sterilizing food, in which a product is processed under very high pressure, which makes certain microorganisms and enzymes in the food inactive, thus making the food last longer.
However, there are certain myths in the food industry about the HPP method, and we give you the answers as to why they’re far from truth.
· High pressure processing damages food
Incorrect . Instead, it helps maintain the shape and texture of the food.
Imagine a grape in your hand which gets crushes when squeezed. But applying pressure equally from all sides, the grape would remain intact. That’s how HPP works.
· High pressure processing is only for large-scale food production
Incorrect. Many smaller producers also use HPP food technology without incurring huge logistical footprint and startup costs.
· High pressure processing is too expensive
Incorrect. With the more businesses oopting for HPP technology, the capital and operating costs for such units are decreaseing. Also, HPP can lead to reduced costs since the amount of chemicals, scrap, recalls, transportation, consumer complaints, and costs associated with freezing and thermal processing are reduced drastically.
· High pressure processing destroys the food’s nutrition
Incorrect. With reduced microbial activity, HPP can actually enhance the longevity of the food product.
· You can’t use High pressure processing on MAP foods
Incorrect. The contents and packaging for use with HPP can be modified for Modified Atmosphere Packaging (MAP).
However, there are several advantages of having High pressure processing for packaging food products :
- Characteristics , sensorial and nutritional properties of the fresh product remain almost intact.
- Pathogens are destroyed.(Listeria, Salmonella, Vibrio, Norovirus, etc.)
- Extends product shelf life which means less products returned and improved customer satisfaction.
- Reduces the need for food preservatives , hence the food becomes additive free
- New innovative food propositions , i.e., foods that cannot be treated thermally can be done so with high pressure.
- Only needs water (which is recycled) and electricity hence is environmentally friendly.
This Food Safety Month, get familiar with the various aspects of Food Safety like Food Storage, Food Processing, Personal Hygiene, Packaging & Labelling and Cleaning & Sanitation.
Learn about food safety, participate and win exciting prices from the comfort of your home!