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Green Peas Processing and Preservation using IQF Technology

Thursday, August 2, 2018

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Green Peas Processing and Preservation using IQF Technology. Start your own Vegetable Preservation and Processing Business

Green peas are a tasty and very nutritious vegetable that should be a part of almost everyone's diet. They're a great source of protein, vitamins, minerals, and soluble fiber. They are also very versatile. Peas can be cooked and prepared in many different ways and can add flavor and interest to many dishes. Another advantage of peas is that they are often inexpensive to buy.

In addition to being a component of a meal, green peas can be used to make other foods, including soups, puddings, and porridges. They also make a great addition to items such as salads, stews, pies, pasta, and omelettes.

Freeze drying is a relatively recent method of preserving food. It involves freezing the food, then removing almost all the moisture in a vacuum chamber, and finally sealing the food in an airtight container. Freeze dried foods can be easily transported at normal temperatures, stored for a long period of time, and consumed with a minimum of preparation.

Freeze-dried food has many advantages. Because as much as 98% of the water content has been removed, the food is extremely lightweight, which significantly reduces the cost of shipping? This also makes it popular with boaters and hikers who have to carry their food with them. Because it requires no refrigeration, shipping and storage costs are even further reduced. Freeze-dried food is also relatively contamination-free since the dehydration process makes it virtually impossible for yeast and potentially harmful bacteria to survive.

Types of Green Peas

The scientific name of the green pea plant is Pisum sativum. The plant is also known as the garden pea or simply "the pea". There are many closely related varieties of Pisum sativum. These have slightly different characteristics. Somewhat confusingly, the different varieties of green pea often have different common names.

Biologically, a pea pod is a fruit and the peas inside are seeds. In some varieties of green pea the pods are edible and in others they aren't. Inedible pods have a fibrous inner layer which edible pods lack.

Some popular varieties of green pea are described below:

·         Snow peas have flat, edible pods. They are picked when the peas are very small and are eaten whole. Snow peas are also known as Chinese pea pods and are often eaten raw or stir fried.

·         Sugar snap peas also have edible pods and are eaten whole. The pods are sweeter and rounder than snow pea pods and have a crunchy texture when raw.

·         Marrowfat peas are green peas with unusually large and starchy seeds.

·         Yellow peas are varieties of the green pea plant that have yellow seeds instead of green ones.

·         Split peas are dried peas which have been allowed to split naturally into two sections or are helped to do so mechanically. They are produced from both green and yellow varieties of the pea plant.

Some of the health benefits of Green Peas are given below.

·         Green Peas help in losing weight.

·         Green Peas help in controlling blood sugar levels.

·         Green Peas help in prevention of wrinkles, Alzheimer’s, arthritis, bronchitis and osteoporosis.

·         Green Peas source of anti-aging, strong immune system, and high energy.

·         Green Peas may help in prevention of stomach cancer.

·         Green Peas may help in improving digestion.

Pea is a quick growing, an annual herbaceous vine which requires the trellis to support its growth. It flourishes in well-drained, sandy soil supplemented with adequate moisture and cold weather conditions. Short-stalked, green pods appear by late winter or early spring. Each pod measures about 2-3 inches long, swollen or compressed, straight or slightly curved, filled with a single row of 2-10, light-green, smooth edible seeds.

Green peas are winter crops. Fresh peas can be readily available from December until April in the markets. However, dry, mature seeds, and split peas, flour...etc., can be found in the markets around the year.

Green peas are at their best soon after harvest since much of their sugar content rapidly convert into starch. To store, place them inside a vegetable container in the home refrigerator set at high relative humidity where they keep fresh for 2-3 days. Frozen seeds, however, can be used for several months.

Pea cultivation is suitable to the cold climatic regions such as North America and Europe where various commercial varieties of peas such as dry peas, yellow, green, maple, green marrowfat, and Austrian winter peas are grown. Dry peas are ranked fourth in terms of world production of legumes below soybeans, peanuts, and dry beans. Yellow peas and green peas are the commercially grown varieties, with yellow peas dominating the global production. North America dominates pea production, followed by Europe. However, the large countries in Asia-Pacific such as China and India are growing at a fast rate.

The increasing world population, mainly in the developing regions, is continuously driving the consumption demand for dry peas. Due to the high consumption demand, developing countries such as China and India are unable to meet the domestic requirement despite having high production volume.

Indians generally prefer green and fresh vegetables but they are available only during seasons. Some their shelf life is not more than 3-4 days. But dehydration technique preserves them for few months and the original taste, flavour and colour is also retained. Green peas are very popular and they are used along with other vegetables in many vegetarian and continental dishes. Many fast food and snack items also include green peas. Thus apart from household demand, there is a continuous demand from restaurants, dhabas, caterers and canteens.

Fresh, sound and green pea pods are thoroughly washed in water and then pea seeds are separated and cleaned with the help of pea podder. Then they are pricked as pricking facilitates quick and uniform drying of peas. Then they are blanched and sulphited to retain colour, taste and texture in the final product. Blanched peas are then dried in a drier wherein moisture is reduced to 7-8%. Drying time is around 3 hours. Finally dried peas are graded and packed.

Green peas are available for around 5 months during winter season only. They are used for making vegetables, as additives in certain vegetables and for making several snack preparations. Hence, if they are made available even during off-season, there is a good market for them. A small scale unit with lower overheads can offer competitive prices. Marketing would play a critical role. Likewise, the promoters should have adequate financial resources as the finished goods stock of around 5-6 months shall have to be stored.

Pea (Pisum sativum) is the third most important pulse crop at global level, after dry bean and chickpea and third most popular rabi pulse of India after gram and lentil.

Uttar Pradesh is the major field pea growing state. It alone produces about 49 % of pea produced in India. Garden pea is cultivated on a large scale in other states like Madya Pradesh and Jharkhand, Himachal Pradesh, Punjab, West Bengal, Haryana, Bihar, Uttarakhand, Jammu and Kashmir, Odisha, parts of Rajasthan and Maharashtra. In south it is grown in Karnataka and in the hilly regions like Ooty and Kodaikanal.

 

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