LOCAL and international food producers and technologists have come together at the Agri-Food and Biosciences Institute (AFBI), to look at the new High Pressure Processing (HPP) technology and opportunities for improved food products and safety.
Danny Millar, well known NI chef and restaurateur of Parsons Nose in Hillsborough, spoke about the potential benefits for food quality and safety.
"This has tremendous potential for the preparation and treatment of many fresh products and particularly seafood such as oysters and lobsters," he said. "We use only locally sourced Irish Dundrum oysters but I would encourage suppliers to take on board the new HPP technology as more chefs will expect this, which ensures a perfectly opened oyster, or shelled lobster with much higher levels of meat recovered and with the added advantage of greatly increased food safety levels."
HPP is an innovative, simple, yet cost-effective new technology which uses pressure treatment to improve shelf life and enhance food safety levels for fresh quality food.
Dr. Margaret Patterson, AFBI microbiologist and lead scientist with the HPP project spoke about the opportunities of the new technology for the food industry.
"Customers are demanding extended chill shelf life, more fresh quality products and higher levels of food safety," she said. At the same time processors need cost reduction and new product and market opportunities. HPP is a technology that is well accepted by customers because it does not alter the product."