Important factors that must be considered in heat treatment
There are different factors that must be considered in the use of Heat treating equipment that includes the environmental and business aspects of the process. One of the popular heat treatment processes is pasteurization. Louis Pasteur discovered a century ago that microorganisms and fermentation can result into diseases. This discovery has led to the high heat treatment and canning as methods of food preservation. When milk is pasteurized, chilled milk must be heated to the pasteurization temperature after which it will be cooled to the original inlet temperature. When the heat of the pasteurized milk is used to heat incoming cold milk which will simultaneously cool the outgoing hot milk, energy consumption is reduced. This process that is called regenerative effect is a more economical option that will benefit both the manufacturer and the environment.
Heat treating equipment is not the only tool for food preservation
In the pasteurization of milk, the Heat treating equipment must reach high enough temperatures that will bacteria. The pasteurization temperature for milk is 145oF (62.8oC) for half an hour or 163oF (72.8oC) for 15 seconds. In ultra-high temperature (UHT) pasteurization, the temperature of milk is raised to approximately 285oF (141oC) for one or two seconds. If you see those boxes of milk lining the shelves in the dairy section, you are sure about their food safety because they have been pasteurized in the Heat treating equipment. Aside from the application of heat treatment on liquids like milks, there are other methods of food preservation like fermentation that makes use of yeast to produce alcohol. Fermentation is used in the creation of wine that lasts for a very long time even without refrigeration due to the presence of alcohol that acts as the preservative. Soft drinks contain a natural preservative due to the process of carbonating that eliminates oxygen to inhibit the growth of bacteria.
Aseptic packaging is new technology that makes use of heat treatment through a heated hydrogen peroxide bath with a concentration of 30%. The aseptic package is sterilized at 70oC for 6 seconds before it is filled with food that has been heat treated with ultra high temperature. Hydrogen peroxide is removed from the aseptic packaging through pressure rollers or hot air. The product that is packed in aseptic usually has a shelf life of 6 months. However, to ensure food safety, it is important to handle packaging in a sterile environment that is free from any contaminants that can compromise food safety.