The Department of Science and Technology-Food and Nutrition Research Institute (DOST-FNRI) has developed a new system wherein preserved fruits and vegetables retain their nutritional and sensory properties.
The DOST said the FNRI’s Nutrition and Food Research and Development Division came up with the Low Heat, Low Humidity Drying System or LH2 “to minimize the volume of agricultural loss while maintaining the nutritional and sensory property of dried products.”
“LH2 is a new technique of preserving fruits and vegetables. It uses desiccants to reduce drying air’s humidity that enables dehydration at lower temperature, resulting in retained sensory and nutritional properties,” the DOST said in a Facebook post.
It noted that fruits and vegetables that have been dried through the DOST-FNRI’s LH2 are shelf-stable six months and four months, respectively.
“The results of microbial analyses done on the dried products showed that these are within the safe range for microbial load and are safe for consumption,” it said.
“The LH2-dried fruits and vegetables can be healthier options and offer value-adding to local produce with higher nutrition retention and sensory acceptability. These dried products can be also included in relief packs distributed as part of emergency response during disasters, calamities, and also during pandemics.”
The DOST bared the ongoing construction of the DOST-FNRI’s LH2 intended for large scale production.
“Once built, pilot scale production and feasibility studies will follow. The roll-out and commercialization of the technology will push through after the pilot scale production and conduct of feasibility study,” it said.
“On the other hand, the adoption of this technology will be through the technology transfer program of DOST-FNRI.”
The DOST-FNRI expressed hope that the LH2 will increase production of locally produced dried fruits and vegetables that are nutritious, healthier, and sensory acceptable.