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Brazilian Journal of Food Technology

versão On-line ISSN 1981-6723

Resumo

COSTA, David Aquino da et al. Quality of in-shell Brazil nuts after drying using a pilot natural convection oven in the state of Acre, Brazil. Braz. J. Food Technol. [online]. 2017, vol.20, e2015104.  Epub 13-Jul-2017. ISSN 1981-6723.  http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/1981-6723.10415.

The natural drying of in-shell Brazil nuts carried out by the extractivists is not effective in reducing contamination by aflatoxin-producing fungi. Thus the use of an artificial heater could prove to be a favourable method to bring about a rapid reduction in the moisture content of the nuts and thereby prevent fungal growth. Hence the objective of this study was to evaluate the efficiency of a natural convection-type drier with respect to the physical, physicochemical and microbiological quality of nuts after drying for 6 hours at 45 °C. A random block experimental design with two treatments (nuts before and after drying) was used, using 10 replications of 3 kg. The nuts were analysed for their moisture, ash, protein, dietary fibre, total carbohydrates and lipid contents, water activity, total count of filamentous, potentially aflatoxin-producing fungi, and also the quantification of aflatoxins B1, B2, G1, G2 and the total aflatoxins. There was no effect of drying on the Aspergillus flavus and Aspergillus parasiticus counts or on the physicochemical composition of the nuts, except for the ash content. However the moisture content of the nuts was reduced by 39.7% and there was a decrease in the contamination by pre-existing total filamentous fungi. The dryer was effective in reducing the average time taken for drying as compared to the traditional method used by extractivists.

Palavras-chave : Bertholletia excelsa; Aspergillus flavus; Aspergillus parasiticus; Aflatoxins.

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