CIT UNIVERSITY- AAA Continuing Education Program
The Continuing Education Program is one of the successful and popular initiatives undertaken by the CIT-University Alumni Association Australia Chapter, conducted annually in Australia and at the Mother Chapter in Cebu City. The program’s aim is to provide its membership and their friends and families with opportunities for intellectual and professional development, by exposing them to various lectures and presentations on various topics of interest. These presentations are generally conducted by association members or invited guests who have expertise and experience in their respective fields of endeavour.
On 24th July 2015, Dr Tom Cardona presented a lecture on Food Canning Process to 4th year Chemical Engineering Students, Alumni and a number of faculty members at Cebu Institute of Technology University (CITU) Main Campus, Cebu City. The lecture covered important aspects of Food Canning Processes with emphasis on assessment and validation of Food Canning Equipment, establishment and validation of Scheduled Thermal Processes and analyses of heating curves during the cooking process to determine parameters required for mathematical modelling of the canning process. A short video presentation of the canning process was also shown at the end of the lecture and then followed by questions and answers session. The lecture was well received by all attendees.
Food Canning Processes
Canning process is one method of food preservation in which foods are placed in hermetically sealed containers such as tin, steel or aluminium cans, glass jars, bottles and flexible pouches and heating them to a temperature that destroys micro-organisms that cause foods to spoil. Canned Foods have shelf-life typically ranging from one to five years, although under specific circumstances it can be much longer and still safe to consume.
Canned foods are either commercially sterile or pasteurised foods. Commercially sterile foods, also known as sterilised foods or shelf stable foods, are foods that do not contain any viable micro-organisms capable of growing under normal ambient storage conditions. These foods may contain some viable thermophilic spores but these spores could not germinate under ambient conditions. Sterile foods are considered as highly processed foods thus, they are more expensive because they are processed higher temperature at longer process duration. The sterilising value or thermal process severity (Fo) of sterilised foods is the minimum 12D thermal process or ‘botulinum cooks’. On the other hand, pasteurised foods, also known as minimally processed foods or cook chill foods, because these foods are always associated with ‘freshness’ and they are given only a mild heat process usually from 70°C to 90°C. The thermal process severity (Fp) for pasteurised foods would be a minimum of 6D thermal process but the finished product must be kept refrigerated below 5°C. The 6D thermal process varies depending on the target micro-organism. The minimally processed foods must be kept refrigerated during storage and distribution either at temperature below 3°C or at temperature above 3°C but below 8°C depending on the thermal process severity.
The presentation covered important requirements for production of either commercially sterile or pasteurised foods. The requirements include the premises, processing equipment use, evaluation and/or validation of these equipment to determine if they would satisfy the good manufacturing processes (GMP) for the canning process. After equipment validation and evaluation, heat penetration studies of each product must be conducted to determine the minimum Fo or Fp values, which are the basis of the Scheduled thermal Process. These Fo and Fp data are then submitted to the Regulatory Agencies like the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) of the USA the Australian Quarantine and Inspection Services (AQIS) in Australia as one of the requirements for the Canning process. A short video presentation of the canning process was included at the end of the presentation followed by questions and answers.