Quick quality measurements during food processing

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Matís' Process and Product Development Division is working on a project that aims to improve process management in food. This will be achieved by researching new rapid measurement methods on food quality indicators and designing food processing processes that make use of these methods.

In the project, funded by the Rannís Technology Development Fund, the possibilities of Near Infra Red (NIR), Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (NMR) and X-ray X-ray metering technology will be evaluated to measure the chemical content of food (NIR) and other properties of water (NMR) and water properties. (X-ray).

Conventional measurements to assess these quality factors are usually time consuming and require the use of organic or hazardous solvents, but no such materials are involved in measurements using these rapid methods on which the project is based. The methods also all have in common that they do not cause any changes in the quality of food during measurements, which makes it possible for them to be used in real time in food processing lines.

With these quick methods, it is possible to better control the production and ensure that each part of the raw material is utilized in the best possible way and that foreign objects are found and removed quickly and safely. In this way, the control of the processing processes can be improved, and subsequently the quality, safety, utilization and value of food can be improved. The project also involves the design of a production line that utilizes these measurement methods in a systematic way.

The project is carried out in collaboration with Marel, which plays an important role in the design of the production line, in addition to collaboration with Vísi hf, Reykjagarður hf. and Herring and fish. The measurement methods will be used for research into the processing processes of fresh fish, meat and chicken.

Near Infrared (NIR) Measuring Instruments (left) and Low Field NMR (right)

The project is part of María Guðjónsdóttir's doctoral program, chemical engineer and project manager at Matís' Processing and Product Development Division.