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Do’s and Don’ts when freezing IQF mangoThe global trend for a healthy lifestyle is one of the reasons why the IQF fruit market is experiencing such an increase in demand, mostly for IQF mango, IQF strawberries and IQF raspberries. IQF fruit are more and more used as raw ingredients for bakery, confectionary and dairy products, gaining more popularity than canned or dried fruit.
One of the most popular IQF fruits is IQF mango, which is mostly used for confectionaries, frozen salads and smoothie mixes. Today’s end customer expects to buy a well-separated and good looking mango when opening the package but the traditional freezing methods are starting to fail in offering high quality products with natural appearance. Therefore, IQF mango processors have the mission to deliver high-quality individually quick frozen products to their customers.
In order to achieve a good freezing result with IQF mango, the OctoFrost team has a few important do’s and don’ts to share, which can be grouped in 6 main criteria.
Controlling the maturity and ripeness degree of the mango
Selecting the right maturity and ripeness of mango before being exposed to the process of freezing is of high importance. The colour of the peel can be used as a good indicator: the fewer brown spots – the better. The next step is to check the interior colour and texture.
For this, you need to cut the mango in half. If the colour is evenly yellow and the pulp is firm when pressing it, then the mango can be further frozen. It is important to note that very soft meat which is close to the core can form corals or lumps during the freezing process.
Controlling the brix level
The accepted brix level for mango, according to the international standards, is between 11 and 14. However, in Asia, the brix level can be up to 22, which is an attractive feature, but it can also make the freezing process more challenging.
Correct cutting and dicing equipment
Hand peeling and cutting of IQF mango is the most recommended method. It is important to make sure that the knives which are used are very sharp. Dicing the mango with automatic machines can usually results in more irregular shapes on the mango’s edges and it will imply more work in sorting out the smaller mango pieces and removing them after dicing. If the smaller pieces are not removed, these will stick to other mango cubes and create corals during the freezing process.
Pre-cooling before freezing
Cooling down the mango right after dicing is very important. IQF mango processors usually use cooling water close to 0o C since the mango will slightly increase its temperature while it's transported on the conveyor belt before entering the freezer. For really good results it is recommended that the mango’s temperature should be lower than 5o C right before entering the freezer.
Dewatering the mango after cooling is very important. The maximum surface water should not exceed 2%. This is crucial for a good freezing result.
An even feeding rate of the infeed conveyor
Infeed conveyors with vibrating function are the best choice for freezing IQF mango. It is important that the infeed conveyor has the right shooting position into the freezer. A too high drop will destroy the surface of the mango while a well distributed sidewise drop will prevent lump formation when the mango enters the freezer.
And finally, the IQF freezer used plays the ultimate role in the obtained quality. The OctoFrost IQF freezer has proven to be an optimal solution for best freezing results: natural appearance, good separation and high yield.
It is truly a science to process IQF mango, which is why we, at OctoFrost, are always supporting mango processors who want to develop the best methods, taking into account the raw material available and the equipment they use.
For more information:
Mob: +46 (0) 7600 600 81
Publication date: 8/25/2017
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