Drying modelling of defrosted pork meat under forced convection conditions

Autores UPV


Drying is the lengthiest and the most energy consuming step during the production of dry-cured ham, affecting also the curing process and consequently product quality. In order to manage the drying process, it is quite interesting to establish the complexity of model needed. For that purpose, pork meat cylinders (Biceps femoris and Semimembranosus muscles) were dehydrated under forced convection conditions (25°C and air velocity 0.6±0.1, 2.0±0.1 and 2.8±0.1m/s). Experimental drying kinetics were modelled by means of 4 diffusion models: model 1 (not considering shrinkage and no external resistance), model 2 (considering shrinkage and no external resistance), model 3 (not considering shrinkage and considering external resistance) and model 4 (considering both shrinkage and external resistance). From the effective diffusivity values identified, it was concluded that when external resistance was negligible (air velocity 2.0±0.1 and 2.8±0.1m/s), the results obtained for De with the four models were the same. Nevertheless, when external resistance was not negligible (0.6±0.1m/s) the De identified was influenced by the model due to the fact that models 1 and 2 neglect that resistance and for that reason they do not describe experimental conditions properly. The effect of shrinkage did not influence the identified De values for the drying conditions considered. In order to model water losses in meat curing chambers, external resistance must be considered. © 2011 Elsevier B.V.