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April-May-June 2012 Go Back
WHEN MOISTURE IS TORTURE !
In this column, we will share with you regularly our experience in major application areas where usage of dehumidification is both extensive and essential.

Moisture control keeps Packaged Food Fresh, Healthy and Tasty

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With passage of time our eating habits have changed. Today, the popularity of processed foods (ready – to – eat and ready – to – serve foods) like instant food mixes, soups, candies, milk powders, have increased and become an important part of our diet.
To retain the taste and long preservation of processed foods, it becomes necessary to tackle the moisture menace during storage, production, packaging, processing and drying. Moisture can result in :
 
Bry Air newsletter bullet2 Product spoilage and loss of shelf life
Bry Air newsletter bullet2 Lumping and caking
Bry Air newsletter bullet2 Loss of freshness, crispness, flavor and shape
 
Moisture causes lumping and caking during processing of instant food mixes , soups , soft drink concentrates ,
milk powder etc.
Presence of moisture causes lumping and caking while processing of powdery foods like milk powder, coffee, dehydrated soft drink concentrates etc. This affects their free and easy movement in the processing machines and pneumatic conveyors.
 
Pasta requires moisture control
Drying is the most time consuming process in manufacturing of pasta. The moisture content of the sheet is around 25% by weight and has to be reduced to 10~13%. However, the rapid drying of pasta in its final shape would cause cracking, whereas the slow drying would result to moldiness or souring of product. Therefore, it is necessary to maintain a perfect calibration of right condition of relative humidity, temperature and rate of air circulation.
 
Moisture control is necessary for production of candies and chocolates
Controlled dry air in manufacturing of hard candy prevents the candy from becoming sticky and adhering to stamping machines, mixing / blending vessels and packaging materials. It also aids in speedier surface hardening. It helps in chocolate setting and gives a smooth finish to the final product.
 
Moisture control keep wafers, snacks, biscuits crisp and fresh during packaging and storage
Biscuits, snacks, wafers, corn chips, powdery food, soft drink concentrates as well as frozen dried foods tend to regain moisture unless relative humidity is effectively controlled during packaging and storage. In particular the ideal condition for biscuit packaging is 40% RH at 21 to 24°C. Humidity level in the hot room should be controlled between 35-40% RH at ambient temperature to retain the crispness.
 
Hygienic packaging of spices and herbs require moisture control
Moisture is a major menace while packaging of spices. Being hygroscopic in nature, they absorb moisture and become sticky which inhibits free flow and creates hygiene problems.
 
Moisture control improve sugar quality
Sugar is hygroscopic and absorbs moisture readily during processing. It creates operational problems during packaging. Refined sugar is fed via belt conveyors to sugar bins or hoppers. The sugar has to be cooled before it can be packed. Cooling by conventional methods takes about 12-35 hours which result in condensation on the bin ceiling causing lumping of top layer and thus deteriorating the overall quality.