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Research Call

DAFM Reference


DAFM Award

DAFM National Call 2010 10RDTMFRC703 Teagasc (UCD, UCC) €356,104

Project Title:

The use of novel technologies for improving quality and process efficiency in high protein beverage production

Project Coordinator:

Dr Donal O'Callaghan

Project Abstract

There are many technical challenges with thermal processing of high protein beverages (e.g. sports drinks) manufactured using dairy ingredients. Protein destabilisation is associated with high viscosity in the product and fouling in conventional heat treatment systems. This project proposes to investigate new technologies for heat processing (temperatures ≤180°C duration ≤1s) dairy based beverages (protein concentrations ≤10%) namely (1) supersonic steam injection heating (SSIH, ≤180°C) and (2) cooled electrode ohmic heating (CEOH, ≤140°C) with the latter evaluated in the presence/absence of an additional high temperature pulsed electrical field (HTPEF) hurdle. SSIH generates hydrodynamic cavitation which minimises scaling, while CEOH generates heat within the bulk fluid with electrode cooling preventing fouling. PEF is a technique which could be integrated with CEOH in a combined hurdle system with a view to sterilising products at lower temperatures than conventional heat processing. While PEF is generally viewed as a "non-thermal" pasteurisation which inactivates vegetative cells, this project will assess its potential for spore inactivation when applied at higher temperatures in conjunction with CEOH. The project will monitor the microbial and sensory properties of model beverages after processing and project outputs will include fully characterised thermal processes, for processing of high protein beverages with good quality characteristics.

Final Report: