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Shelf life extension of sugarcane juice using preservatives and gamma radiation processing

Preserving raw sugarcane juice is a challenging problem. Sugarcane juice turns brown soon after its extraction and gets spoiled due to fermentation within hours. A combination of gamma radiation (5 kGy) with permitted preservatives and low temperature storage (10 °C) could preserve raw sugarcane juice for more than a month. The preservatives used were citric acid (0.3%), sodium benzoate (0.015%), potassium sorbate (0.025%), and sucrose (10%). The treatment helped in extending the shelf life to 15 d at ambient temperature (26 ± 2 °C) and 35 d at 10 °C. The microbial load was found to be below detectable limit within this period. The biochemicals like phenolics and flavonoids were not found to be affected by addition of these preservatives. The antioxidant activities including free radical scavenging activity, nitrite scavenging activity, and reducing power were also not significantly affected. The sensory evaluation scores showed that the juice with this combination treatment was highly acceptable

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