Date of Award:

2003

Document Type:

Thesis

Degree Name:

Master of Science (MS)

Department:

Nutrition, Dietetics, and Food Sciences

Department name when degree awarded

Nutrition and Food Sciences

Advisor/Chair:

Deloy G. Hendricks

Abstract

This study was undertaken to determine the effect of oxygen absorber packets (OAP) (AGELESS Z.300 E) in improving the shelf-life of selected dried food products, including dried potato pearls, dried sliced apple, dried carrot, white rice, nonfat dry milk, all purpose flour, rolled oats, and wheat. Items were stored at four different temperatures (-20, 10, 21, and 29.5°C) over a period of 24 months with observations at 6-month intervals. Hunter colorimeter, thiobarbituric acid reactive substance (TBARS) germination rate, gluten weight, and volume were parameters used as quality indicators of various dried foods.

Statistical analysis indicated a significant time and temperature effect for almost all the stored products. Storage at a high temperature (29.5°C) renders OAP ineffective in reducing browning during storage. Potato pearls, dried sliced apple, and dried carrot exhibit darkening by the first 6 months of storage at 29.5°C regardless of oxygen status of the container. White rice showed yellowing under the same conditions. Most of the dried food products that were stored at 10 and 21°C with or without oxygen absorber packets maintained their color as indicted by a relatively constant lightness reading (L*) over time. TBARS values rose in all stored food with increasing storage time, especially when the dried products were stored at higher temperature (29.5°C). Statistical analysis indicated a significant OAP effect in reducing TBARS concentration over time.

Germination of wheat kernel was reduced to less than 80% after 24 months of storage at 29.5°C. However, when stored with oxygen absorber packets, germination was still 86%. Storage length and temperature are the primary factors that determine the quality of home-stored dried food items.

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