WSU research featured in Food Engineering Magazine

Pullman, Wash. – Washington State University research on food processing techniques that could improve the quality of meals soldiers eat in the field was featured in the March 2007 edition of Food Engineering Magazine.

The research, funded by WSU’s International Marketing Program for Agricultural Commodities & Trade (IMPACT) Center, was conducted by Juming Tang, IMPACT food technology fellow, and Barbara Rasco, IMPACT scientist. They developed a single-mode system for microwave sterilization and pasteurization. The process was recently awarded several patents and has the potential to be used by the U.S. military to improve meals for soldiers. The Pacific Northwest fish industry sees great economic potential in this method for producing high quality, shelf-stable fish products.

The study concentrated on the quality of salmon fillet muscle during a thermal sterilization process. It measured factors such as shear force, color, cooking loss and shrinkage of the fillet. The study found the red muscle was firmer than the white muscle in raw samples but not in the heated samples. The researchers also found that muscle from the central dorsal region had a lower cooking loss and less shrinkage than samples from either the anterior or posterior region following the heating process.

To find the article in Food Engineering Magazine visit and click on Microwave Systems: Revolutionary Lightwaves Boost Quality.

The study results were also published in the Journal of Food Science and can be found online at; the paper is titled “Quality Changes of Salmon (Oncorhynchus gorbuscha) Muscle during Thermal Processing.”

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