Evaluation of Physicochemical and Microbial Changes of Bulk Tomato Paste in Cold Storage

A. H. Elahami Rad, F. Shahidi
2004 Tulīd va Farāvarī-i Maḥṣūlāt-i Zirā̒ī va Bāghī  
Bulk tomato paste is produced in concentrations higher than 35% (350 Brix scale) and its packaging is not hermetic. In recent years, the production of this product in our country has considerably increased. One of the most important problems in the tomato paste industry of Iran is the preservation of bulk tomato paste. Shelf-life of tomato paste depends on many factors such as initial quality of tomato paste, cooling conditions, salting, packaging, handling, and cold storage. The product
more » ... The product factors evaluated in this study included: 1) microbial parameters such as total count, acid-resistant microorganisms, and Howard Mould Count and 2) physico-chemical parameters such as acidity, pH, amount of lactic acid (D and L forms), and total dry matter. Experimental data showed that using high brix (35-38) in producing tomato paste along with salting the product surface and storing it at 0 ºC had only a limiting effect on microbial changes and could not prevent their growth completely. However, salting treatment had a great effect on surface growth of fungi and their ability to produce colonies and mycelia. On the basis of the results obtained from this study, cooling of bulk tomato paste in ambient temperature is critical to bulk tomato paste production process and also has an important effect on the quality and shelf-life of the product.
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