banner
mashed potatoes

The dangers of a high-sodium diet have been well documented, but a new technology devised by scientists from Washington State University could help reduce sodium in processed foods while retaining taste and texture.

The researchers used microwave assisted thermal sterilization (MATS) to kill pathogens without reducing flavor intensity, a common problem that occurs with retort, the current method used to help preserve food.

During the study, which was published in the Journal of Food Science, tasting panels evaluated mashed potatoes produced using both methods. An e-tongue assessed the impact of the reduced salt and the effect on the intensities of pepper, garlic, and other ingredients. Although pepper intensity remained the same for both fresh potatoes and those produced using MATS, it was reduced in retort processing.

Carolyn Ross, lead author of the study, suggested that the retort process takes longer to rise to the appropriate temperature and longer to cool down, resulting in texture and flavor changes in the food being treated. Since the MATS process take less time, the impact on food flavor and texture is reduced. Additionally, when pepper flavor is retained, less salt is needed.

The researchers believe that a salt reduction of up to 50% could be attained using the MATS processing method because the flavor of other herbs is enhanced.

Although MATS is a relatively new technology, Ross believes it holds potential for reducing salt and maintaining flavor in processed foods. “We have to make a product that people want to eat,” she said in a press release. “And there are a lot of older adults that eat prepared meals because of convenience and safety. So if we can reduce salt intake from those foods, and still have pleasant flavors, it could be hugely beneficial.”

More from IFTNEXT right arrow

Enzyme technology enables efficient PET recycling

France-based Carbios is developing the first biological technology to transform the end-of-life of plastics, says Martin Stephan, deputy CEO of Carbios.

A new approach to reducing salt while maintaining taste

The dangers of a high-sodium diet have been well documented, but a new technology devised by scientists from Washington State University could help reduce sodium in processed foods while retaining taste and texture.

More from IFT right arrow

Meat Packaging Design Captures Consumers’ Attention

This column provides information about using packaging design to communicate the distinctive value of meat and to protect meat to ensure waste is minimized.

Planting the Seeds for a Better Future

A question-and-answer interview in which Bernhard van Lengerich discusses the Seeding the Future Global Food System Challenge.

Can Science Deliver Zero Hunger?

The UN’s 2030 target to curb food insecurity is fast approaching, and we’re losing ground. How can the global food system pull together to regain momentum?

Be the Change: Taking Action to Eliminate Hunger

IFT President Noel Anderson reflects on the ways that IFT is working to help address global hunger.

Conserving Processing Water Requires a Systems Approach

An exploration of the importance of water conservation in food and beverage processing and new technologies to help bring it about.

Latest News right arrow

Lee Kum Kee awarded LEED Platinum certification for Xinhui production base

Lee Kum Kee, an Asian sauce provider, has announced that its Xinhui Production Base was awarded LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Platinum certification.

Call to action for stronger, better-funded federal nutrition research

According to a group of research, policy, and government experts, the United States needs to strengthen and increase funding for federal nutrition research and improve cross-governmental coordination in order to accelerate discoveries, grow the economy, and—most importantly—improve public health, food/nutrition security, and population resilience.

Report identifies 27 countries heading for COVID-19-driven food crises

New analysis by the United Nation’s Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and World Food Program (WFP) identifies 27 countries that are on the frontline of impending COVID-19-driven food crises, as the pandemic’s knock-on effects aggravate pre-existing drivers of hunger.

Amazon unveils ‘smart’ shopping cart

According to the Associated Press, Amazon has debuted a new smart shopping cart called the Dash Cart.

Diageo to launch Johnnie Walker in 100% plastic-free, paper-based bottle

Diageo, makers of Johnnie WalkerSmirnoff, and Guinness, has created a 100% plastic-free and paper-based spirits bottle, made entirely from sustainably sourced wood.