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Fibre-rich fruit juices are playing an increasing role in healthy nutrition, and consumers are regarding them, especially citrus juices of 100% fruit content, as reliable sources of vitamin C. Nevertheless relatively few scientific data are available on vitamin C retention during the heat treatment of aseptically packed fruit juices made from fruit concentrates. Authors investigated this problem within the scope of OTKA T 014965 research project (Körmendy et al., 1998, 1999a, 1999b; Pátkai, 1998).

Instead of separate case studies on different types of fruit juices and technologies, authors analysed the vitamin C content of model solutions with similar composition to real citrus juices as a function of temperature and duration of heat treatment and that of initial oxygen and ascorbic acid concentration. Based on the measured data, they elaborated kinetic relations and determined the reaction rate constants of vitamin C decomposition under the experimental conditions. By means of the calculated kinetic relations and reaction rate constants one can estimate the losses of vitamin C in the case of known parameters of the heat treatment, packaging material, oxygen and vitamin C concentration within the investigated domain. Results may promote technology and product development in the field of citrus fruit juices.

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