, Volume 3, Issue 6, pp 843-852
Date: 23 Apr 2010

Drying Technology: Trends and Applications in Postharvest Processing

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Abstract

Thermal drying technologies have attracted significant R&D efforts owing to the rising demand for improved product quality and reduced operating cost as well as diminished environmental impact. Drying materials may appear in the form of wet solid, liquid, suspension, or paste, which require drying to extend the period of storage, ease of transportation, and for downstream processing to produce value added products. Most of these materials are heat-sensitive and require careful drying; conventional hot air drying can be detrimental to the retention of bioactive ingredients. High temperature tends to damage and denature the product, destroy active ingredients, cause case hardening and discoloration, etc. This article briefly summarizes some of the emerging drying methods and selected recent developments applicable to postharvest processing. These include: heat pump-assisted drying with multimode and time-varying heat input, low and atmospheric pressure superheated steam drying, modified atmosphere drying, intermittent batch drying, osmotic pretreatments, microwave-vacuum drying, etc.