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Effects of gamma ray irradiation on carotenoid retention and color of carrots, sweet potatoes, green beans and broccoli

Effects of gamma ray irradiation on carotenoid retention and color of carrots, sweet potatoes, green beans and broccoli

Food Technology 13(7): 358-365

Color and pigment retention in irradiated sweet potatoes and carrots and the carotenoid retention in irradiated green beans and broccoli were investigated over a wide variety of packing conditions. When samples were irradiated at 1.86 megarads, all packing conditions created considerable loss in carotenoids and color change. Destruction of carotenoids ranged from 5 to 95% for green beans and 25 to 50%, 3 to 20% and 0 to 56% for broccoli, sweet potatoes and carrots respectively. Changes in color, expressed as lightness, hue and chroma, were appreciable for sweet potatoes and carrots. Packing conditions which resulted in least color change and greatest carotenoid retention in carrots consisted of packing in brine under vacuum in plain tin cans and irradiating while frozen. With sweet potatoes, retention of optimum color did not correlate with pigment retention because of oxidative darkening but the conditions that resulted in maximum pigment retention consisted of packing in water under vacuum and irradiating at room temperature.

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