Cold plasma enzyme inactivation on dielectric properties and freshness quality in bananas
Yuxiang Gua, Wenqing Shib, Rui Liuc, Yanan Xingc, Xiuzhu Yua, Hao Jianga
College of Food Science and Engineering, Northwest A&F University, Yangling, Shaanxi 712100, China.
Cold plasma (CP) technology is a novel, non-thermal method to inactive enzymes and improve the quality of food materials. In this study, banana samples were processed via CP treatment for different lengths of time (1, 1.5, and 2 min intervals) and their properties, including dielectric properties, enzyme activities, levels of ROS (reactive oxygen species), enzymatic browning products, color, flavor compounds, and surface microstructure, were measured. The dielectric constant (ε) and loss factor (ε) after CP treatment decreased with increasing frequency and increased with increasing temperature, respectively. Higher values of ε and ε′could also be found after CP treatment. The enzyme activity of polyphenoloxidase (PPO) and peroxydase (POD) decreased with increasing CP treatment time. ROS levels in cells increased after CP treatment, and quinones generated from enzymatic browning decreased at extended treatment times. CP treatment had a positive effect on the surface color of bananas due to enzyme inactivation, while significant differences in a and b values at different treatment times were noted. However, surface morphology changed with increasing CP processing time, leading to a rougher surface microstructure. CP treatment has little impact on flavor compounds and has demonstrated a potential pretreatment technology for dielectric heating/drying.
Keywords: Banana, Cold plasma, Dielectric properties, Quality.