16 Radio Frequency and Microwave Processing of Food

Microwaves have been used as a heat source since the 1940s (Spencer 1949, 1952). Industrial applications of microwave heating include: polymer and ceramics industries (Ayappa, et al. 1991), medicine (Pchelnikov 2003) and food processing (Van Remmen, et al. 1996, Oliveira and Franca 2002, Shaheen, et al. 2012). The food industry is the single largest consumer of microwave energy, where it can be employed for cooking, thawing, tempering, drying, freeze-drying, pasteurization, sterilization, baking, heating and re-heating (Ayappa, et al. 1991). Most homes in western countries have microwave ovens for cooking and reheating food.

Water, which is the major constituent of most food products, is the ...

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