Apricot preservation poses a challenge for farmers due to the fruit’s short shelf life and susceptibility to spoilage and disease. Drying is a commonly used technique in the agri-food industry, but insufficient control in the drying process can result in changes to the fruit’s appearance due to physiological damage during processing. This study aimed to control the drying process of Canino variety to obtain a high-quality product. Drying tests were conducted by varying several parameters: blanching time (1 min to 10 min), drying temperature (60 °C to 80 °C), relative humidity of drying air (maintained at 30% and 35%), and the use of anti-browning agents (Sodium metabisulfite (Na2S2O5) and potassium bisulfite (KHSO3)) with different concentrations (0.5% to 5%). 5-hydroxymethyl-furfural (HMF) and β-carotene were analyzed using chromatographic methods, while the phytochemical, enzymatic activities, and color characteristics were analyzed by spectroscopic methods. The results showed that the optimal conditions for dryingCanino variety were blanching for 5 min, drying at 80 °C with 30% relative humidity and using metabisulfite at 5% concentration. These conditions resulted in a shorter drying time of 12 h, high levels of total phenols (486.67 ± 5.86 mg AGE/100 g) and β-carotene (2473.38 ± 20.49 mg AGE/100 g), and a better preservation of color. All samples met international standards for sulfur dioxide (SO2) content.
Citation: Boudboud A, Benaziz M, Nait M’barek H, Hajjaj H, Hajji L, et al. 2023. Effect of Pretreatment and Process Parameters on the Chemical and Biochemical Properties of Moroccan Apricots (Prunus armeniaca L. Var. Canino). J Food Chem Nanotechnol 9(3): 113-123.