HPP Validation Center

High pressure processing (HPP) (also known as high hydrostatic pressure - HHP) is a non-thermal alternative to thermal pasteurization, which is gaining popularity as consumers continue to demand foods that maintain their freshness, offer a clean label, and deliver superior sensory and nutritional characteristics compared to heat-treated products.

HPP is commonly applied when products are in their final package, and as such can be used as a terminal process for both food safety and shelf life extension.

Prerequisites for HPP treatment include:

  1. Foods must be packaged in flexible containers that allow the transmission of pressure and can withstand the high pressures without rupturing or leaking;
  2. HPP-treated foods should contain minimal amounts of air or dissolved gasses.

Three types of customized services will be offered at the HPP Validation Center

Validation Studies:

  • Products will be inoculated in the typical product container or package with the representative foodborne pathogens (i.e. Listeria monocytogenes, E. coli O157:H7, and Salmonella strains)
  • Cocktail of 5 strains for each pathogen will be used for inoculation
  • Inoculated samples will be treated with varying pressures (max. 87,000 psi) for varying times (typically up to 10 min)
  • Samples will be analyzed for surviving pathogens using standardized FDA Bacteriological Analytical Methodology
  • Target pathogen inactivation: 5-log (99.999% reduction). The pressure and time capable of achieving this reduction will be reported in a formal write up to the client, as HPP processing conditions to meet the regulatory requirements for pathogen inactivation

Microbiological Shelf Life Studies:

  • Packaged food products will be treated with varying pressures (max. 87,000 psi) for varying times (up to 10 min), or the pressure/time combination showing a 5-log reduction of pathogens for that product
  • HPP treated samples will be evaluated for spoilage bacteria, yeast, and molds, at typical refrigerated temperatures or accelerated shelf life temperatures for  up to 6 months
  • Microbiological sampling will occur throughout the shelf life of the product, and sampling times will vary depending on holding temperatures

Physicochemical Evaluation:

  • NO pathogens will be inoculated into the food samples
  • Packaged products will be treated with varying pressures (max. 87,000 psi) for varying times (typically up to 10 min), or the pressure/time combination showing a 5-log reduction of pathogens for that product
  • Samples will be evaluated for color, texture, and product quality aspects specific for the product
  • NO consumption of product will be permitted, and the samples must be retained in the BL2 facility until disposal

*Pricing scheme available upon request