C. M. LARSON, A. R. Sloan, L. V. Ogden, and O. A. Pike. Department of Nutrition, Dietetics and Food Science, Brigham Young University, S-221 ESC, Provo, UT 84602
There is interest in storing low-moisture foods for long periods of time for uses such as personal preparedness, disaster relief efforts, and space travel. Pinto beans in restaurant-sized No. 10 cans are available in the retail market, but work is needed to determine the effects of long-term storage on quality.
The objective of this research was to investigate the quality of retail-packaged pinto beans held at ambient temperatures up to 32 years.
Twenty samples of pinto beans packaged in No. 10 cans and treated to remove oxygen were obtained from donors. Samples ranged from <1 to 32 years in age. Pinto bean samples were soaked in water containing varying levels of baking soda to standardize textural attributes. A 58-member consumer panel evaluated prepared pinto beans for appearance, aroma, texture, flavor, and overall acceptability using a 9-point hedonic scale. Acceptance for use in everyday and emergency situations was also determined. Analyses included can headspace oxygen, can seam quality, color and water activity.
Can headspace oxygen ranged from 2.1 to 20.7%. L*, a*, and b* color values ranged from 40.36 to 59.06, 6.28 to 14.60 and 15.82 to 22.16, respectively. All except 2 cans were hermetically sealed. Water activity ranged from 0.30 to 0.61. Hedonic scores for overall acceptability of pinto beans varied from 3.7 to 6.3. Scores for flavor and overall acceptability, and the percentage of panelists who would eat pinto beans in everyday or emergency situations, decreased slightly with age (p<0.05). However, all samples that had been stored up to 30 years had greater than 80% acceptance for emergency use.
Results indicate that though pinto beans experience a slight loss of quality during storage, they retain a high percentage of consumer acceptance over long periods of time and should be considered acceptable for use in long-term food storage efforts.
Session 54H, Quality Assurance: General