Modeling of the process of moisture loss during the storage of dried apricots

Autores UPV


Moisture content is a reference parameter for dried food because the growth of most microorganisms is inhibited below certain water activity levels. In addition, it has a determining influence on the evolution of important parameters, such as color and flavor, and on other properties and deterioration reactions, such as texture, oxidation processes and nutritional value. During the storage of some dried fruits, moisture is produced due to Maillard reactions and exchanged with the surrounding environment through the packaging. The evolution of dried foods during their shelf life depends on the storage conditions. The aim of this study is to analyze the evolution of the moisture content in dried apricots packaged in different types of containers, namely glass and thermosealed polypropylene trays. The samples were stored at constant temperatures: 5, 15, 25 and 35 °C and were analyzed periodically over a period of 12 months. The sorption isotherms of apricots used in this study were also determined. In order to model how the moisture evolved, an empirical kinetic model was tested. This model considers both water transfer from the fruit and also water production as a result of the Maillard processes. The explained variance was higher than 95% in the samples stored in trays, which were thermosealed with film. © Authors 2011.