Food Engineering Reviews

, Volume 9, Issue 3, pp 143–169 | Cite as

Engineering Process Characterization of High-Pressure Homogenization—from Laboratory to Industrial Scale

  • Sergio I. Martínez-Monteagudo
  • Bing Yan
  • V. M. BalasubramaniamEmail author
Review Article


Fluid foods are a rapidly growing segment serving the needs of consumers’ healthy life style. Though high-pressure pasteurized beverages have been recently commercialized, the batch nature of the technology has been a hurdle for wider adaptation of the technology for high-throughput commodity-oriented beverage products. Further development of continuous flow through high-pressure processing methods is desired. High-pressure homogenization (HPH) consists of forcing a pressurized fluid to flow through a minute gap, which not only homogenizes the fluid but also increases the fluid’s temperature. HPH offers the possibility of combining homogenization and preservation into a single unit operation. By manipulating initial temperature and applied pressure, HPH treatment can be used to pasteurize or sterilize the product. This work critically examines the efforts in understanding fundamental process engineering aspects of HPH, including pressure-thermal process characterization, valve design (gap size and pressure relation), flow pattern, temperature history, and residence time distribution. This review will also highlight the HPH impact on food quality and bioactive compound retention. Quality aspects examined include particle size distribution and microbial and enzyme inactivation. The insight gained by this review will assist readers to gain a better appreciation of the HPH process design and system scale-up.


High-pressure homogenization Fluid food Temperature Valve design Continuous flow process 





Computational fluid dynamics


Glucose oxidase


High-pressure homogenization


High pressure processing


Neutral protease


Pulse electric field


Pectate lyase


Pectin methyl esterase




Residence time distribution


Standard homogenization









Research support for OSU Food Safety Engineering Laboratory ( provided, in part, by USDA National Institute for Food and Agriculture HATCH project, Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Corporation (OARDC), and the food industry. References to commercial products or trade names are made with the understanding that no endorsement or discrimination by The Ohio State University is implied.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Food Science and TechnologyThe Ohio State UniversityColumbusUSA
  2. 2.Dairy and Food Science Department, Alfred Dairy Science HallSouth Dakota State UniversityBrookingsUSA
  3. 3.Department of Food Agricultural and Biological EngineeringThe Ohio State UniversityColumbusUSA

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