The winners, chosen by a panel of eight jurors from industry, academia and government, were selected from 49 entries for their degree of innovation, technical achievement, benefits to food manufacturers and consumers and scientific merit.
EnWave Corporation won an Innovation Award for its nutraRev dehydration technology. This process uses less than one third the energy of freeze drying and one sixth of the capital cost. It harnesses radiant energy vacuum technology to deliver low temperature dehydration of fruits, vegetables, snack foods and herbs.
Dr. Tim Durance, co-chief executive officer of EnWave, said: “Our nutraREV food dehydration technology is poised to revolutionize the dehydration industry and being recognized by this important group is a major achievement.”
Ecolab Incorporated landed an award for its peroxyacetic acid-based commercial sterilant. This sterilizes plastic bottles at lower temperatures than hydrogen peroxide and so cuts energy needs. The sterilant also mitigates bottle shrinkage and residual peroxide chemicals.
The National Centre for Food Safety and Technology was recognized for its pressure-assisted thermal sterilization (PATS) process. This processing technology, approved by the US Food and Drug Administration, uses moderate heat and high pressure to produce commercially sterile low-acid food products which provide equal or better quality than frozen foods.
The organisation’s director Martin Cole said: “The PATS technology promises to deliver a tremendous step change in the way low-acid food product manufacturers assure the safety and enhance the quality attributes of their products.”
Meanwhile, National Starch Food Innovation won an award for its Novation starches. The company’s starches, labeled as corn starch on the ingredient statement, can be used to make salad dressings with texture attributes and process tolerance that were previously possible only with modified food starches.
The competition was open only to companies which exhibited at the IFT event.