Aseptic filling is a complex process in which both the filling and the product thermal treatment play a central role.
For effective aseptic filling it is essential to start with well-treated products. If a product is stable it will remain so in the bottle. If it is not stable, no aseptic filling machine can change its microbiological load. Aseptic filling is not possible for products that have high microbial loads; on the contrary they will contaminate the filling area.
Products generally need to be thermally treated before filling to kill or inactivate the microorganisms that are inside the products and to ensure stability throughout their shelf life. Heat kills microorganisms very effectively and has been widely used by food processors throughout history to ensure shelf life stability. Thermal treatment is much easier with liquids that are free of particles as it can sometimes be difficult for heat to penetrate the fibres. Beverages that contain particles or fibers require turbulent flow to prevent the flow channeling in preferential passages and to ensure an even heat dispersal.
|Product Family||Indirect tubolar||Indirect plate||Direct stem heating with flash cooling||Scrape-surface heat exchangers||Raw-side deaeration|
|Fruit juices with limited pulp||x||(x)||x|
|Fruit juices with long fibers < 10 mm||x||(x)||x|
|Fruit puree with large particles > 10 mm||(x)||(x)|
|Milk and milk-based beverages||x||x||x|
|Custard and puddings||x||(x)||(x)|
|Soups and stews with particles||x||x|
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