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Effect of storage temperature and packaging material on the shelf-life of newly-developed no-added sugar almond paste
Almond paste is a traditional dessert made from sweet almonds which are rich in: omega-6 fatty acids, sugar, and water. Development of no added sugar, low calorie, protein and high fiber source almond paste can be preferred by diabetics and calorie conscious people as a healthy snack. The objectives of this study were to determine the best formulation of no added sugar almond paste by sensory evaluation and investigate the effect of storage temperature and packaging material on shelf-life of newly-developed almond paste. Three different formulated almond pastes were provided by Egepak Company and sensory analysis was performed by using 5-point hedonic scale and ranking tests. Sensory properties including: appearance, taste, sweetness, texture, overall acceptability and ranking were evaluated statistically by using ANOVA. Almond pastes were stored both in small glass jars (GJ) and polyethylene packaging bags (PPB) at 4°C and 21°C. During 56 days of storage, total aerobic mesophil-ic bacteria (TAMB), yeast-mold and coliform counts were determined using: 3M PetrifilmTM aerobic count plates, potato dextrose agar (PDA) and violet red bile agar (VRBA) incubated at 35°C/48h, 25°C/5days and 35°C/24h, respectively. The most desired formulation was determined based on the highest sensory scores: 4.2, 4.2, 3.8, 4.0 for appearance, taste, sweetness, texture, respectively. Microbial counts on TAMB ranged from 3.30 to 3.66 log cfu/g at the end of storage with the most pronounced effect being achieved by PPB at 4°C. No fungal growth was observed during storage on almond paste stored in GJ at 4°C and 21°C. Significant increase occurred in coliform counts at 4°C and 21°C and no advantage was found in samples stored in GJ compared to that in PPB. The combination of 4°C storage temperature and GJ and PPB packaging materials provided the best shelf-life for newly-developed no-added sugar almond paste. © 2019, Consulting and Training Center - KEY. All rights reserved.