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Scientia Agricola

On-line version ISSN 1678-992X


IEMMA, Juliana et al. Gamma radiation and the conservation of natural orange juice. Sci. agric. [online]. 1999, vol.56, n.4, suppl., pp.1193-1198. ISSN 1678-992X.

The effect of gamma radiation was evaluated on the microbiological population, soluble solids content, acidity, pH and ascorbic acid content of natural orange juice. Microbial activity may cause deterioration of orange juice. Irradiation is a process of food conservation which eliminates microorganisms. Neverthless radiation may affect some characterisitics of irradiated foods. The experimental design was a 4x5 factorial scheme, including control and 3 rates of irradiation (2.0, 4.0 and 6.0 kGy) and 5 storage periods (1, 7, 14, 21 and 28 days), with 2 replicates. Samples of juice were extracted from variety "Pera" oranges and irradiated at a rate of 2.0 kGy/h (60Cobalt) and thereafter stored at 5 ± 3oC. Results showed small changes in soluble solids content, acidity and pH, for all treatments. The ratio soluble solids/acidity was also determined and showed little variation for all treatments. There was a reduction on ascorbic acid content of the orange juice with increased radiation dosage and storage time. Gamma radiation was effective in reducing the microbiological population of the juice.

Keywords : gamma radiation; orange juice; conservation.

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