Continued from Monitoring strategies
You can also download the final report (PDF document, 37 pages in total).

Mitigation strategies

Vacuum Baking
It is hypothesized that reducing the thermal energy input during baking may limit the formation of processing contaminants (PCs) in biscuits. Therefore, the objective in this project was to develop vacuum baking as a new baking technology for the mitigation of PCs in biscuits, especially acrylamide.

The results indicated that vacuum baking allows production of biscuits with very low PC content linked to the color of the biscuit. Although lack of surface browning appears as a disadvantage of this technology, the light colored biscuits may be particularly preferable for chocolate-coated products. In addition, using a combined conventional partial baking and vacuum post-baking process could improve the surface browning of biscuits.

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Contact: Vural Gökmen, Hacettepe University (Turkey)
vgokmen (at)

High hydrostatic pressure
The gathered data within the PROMETHEUS-project for the high pressure thermal sterilization (HPTS) could be used to produce a better overall food quality without affecting the microbiological safety of the products. The results obtained at pilot scale (55 L high pressure high temperature system) verified the results at lab scale (4 ml high pressure high temperature system). The up-scaling from lab scale based modeled inactivation kinetic data of a high pressure high temperature resistant spore strain (B.amyloliquefaciens) into an pilot scale system with economical T,t-combination (t ≤ 10 min) in connection with storage trials for the selected food systems was possible. The experiments showed that based on the calculations the storage trials were successful and that a suitable and feasible temperature-time combination at 600 MPa to obtain a safe product could be established. Case by case optimized treatment conditions could be obtained for various food systems.

Furthermore an over-processing can be avoided if HPTS is used as sterilization technique and also results in a double benefit in terms of food quality and microbiological food safety. In the future more research needs to be conducted with more food systems and target microorganisms for the HPTS-process. Also since pilot scale and small industrial systems are available these need to be optimized to guarantee an economical process for the food industry. This signifies that the process line needs to be fine-tuned in terms of output, the heat up time of the vessel needs to be shorten and tools need to be developed to guarantee safe and constant temperature-pressure contribution in the packed food. Hence, the HPTS-process could lead to a new principle of application for high pressure processing, where the benefits of this emerging technology merge to create safer, healthier and high quality foods.

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Contact: Robert Sevenich, Technische Universitat Berlin (Germany)
r.sevenich (at)

Ohmic heating on baby puree
In this project, the objective was to use ohmic heating to mitigate the processing contaminants (PCs), such as furan and hydroxymethylfurfural that occur during food sterilization. A semi-industrial pilot plan (200 to 1000l/h) was used to perform all the trials. The main results obtained are a reduction (2 to 6 times less) of the occurrence of PCs during sterilization compare with classical processing (static or agitating retort).

Furthermore, we observe that ohmic technology significantly preserved carotenoids and polyphenolic compounds during sterilization. With this technology, there is no impact of treatment intensity (sterilization value) or temperature PCs or nutritional compounds. All these results suggest that long processing time is much more damaging to the matrix than high temperature, which confirms the relevance of ohmic heating (High Temperature Short Time). There was no evolution of the molecules studied during 6 months of storage. Ohmic heating is a pure thermal treatment and first industrial applications were implemented far before the enforcement of “Novel Food” European Directive. No authorization is required, prior to processing.

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Contact: Magali Wagner, CTCPA (France)

Ingredient microencapsulation
Microencapsulation has been investigated as a potential method to reduce consumer exposure to undesirable compounds formed during food processing without affecting food quality or microbiological safety. Microencapsulation strategies were applied to two food models: biscuits (microencapsulation of sodium chloride) and infant formula (microencapsulation of ascorbic acid, mineral blends containing iron, and polyunsaturated fatty acid).

Three microencapsulation techniques, adaptable at industrial scale, namely fluid bed coating, prilling (also known as spray-cooling) and spray-drying, were selected. Microparticles were produced with food grade materials, compliant with regulations. The ingredient content in microparticles was up to 800 mg/g of the total weight. The mitigation of contaminants formation in industrial food processes was achieved with both encapsulated sodium chloride and ascorbic acid. To conclude, microencapsulation allowed limitation of substrate availability for process contaminants formation.

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Contact: Samira El Mafadi Jian, Capsulae (France) and Vincenzo Fogliano, University of Napoli (Italy)
elmafadi (at), fogliano (at)
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This project has received funding from the European Union’s Seventh Framework Programme for research, technological development and demonstration under grant agreement No. 265558
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