In part 1 of agro-processing of berries and cherries, we took a look at the processing of blackberries, blackcurrants, blueberries, cherries and Cape gooseberries. In this second part of our berry processing article, we look at some more berries and berry-type fruits.

Gooseberries

  • IQF gooseberries: Fresh gooseberries are individually quick-frozen (IQF) to preserve the cell structure, texture, colour, flavour and aroma of the berries. This produces a product that is ideal for integration into muffins and other bakery products as well as sweet fillings and sauces.
  • Gooseberry concentrate is basically gooseberry purée that has been concentrated. The gooseberries are pulped, depectinised and concentrated to produce a product that can be used in confectionery products, beverages, sauces, flavourings and fillings and in fruit juices after dilution. The product is preserved by freezing.
  • Gooseberry juice can be manufactured from fresh or frozen gooseberries. It is mainly used in juice blend since there is a limited demand for pure gooseberry juice. Gooseberries for juicing should be harvested at full size, but before changing colour.
  • Gooseberry purée is prepared by crushing and pulping fresh gooseberries. Some of the seeds and skin may be removed by filtration, depending on the final use of the product. The purée is preserved by pasteurisation and freezing.
  • Canned gooseberries are prepared from fresh berries, harvested at full size but prior to softening and colour development. The berries may be water-packed for Danish and fruit fillings or sugar-packed for dessert fruit.          

Raspberries

  • Frozen raspberry purée: Fresh raspberries are crushed and pulped to a purée. Some of the fibrous matter and seeds may be removed, depending on the final product use. Frozen packs are used extensively by commercial pie bakers.
  • Raspberry jam is produced from fresh or frozen raspberries harvested at full maturity. Jam is a product consisting of whole fruit, pieces of fruit, fruit pulp or fruit purée of one or more types of fruit with fruit juice or concentrated fruit juice as an optional ingredient, and may contain permitted food additives and sweeteners.
  • Raspberry jelly is produced by the concentration and gelling of unsweetened raspberry juice or raspberry syrup. Jelly consists of either the juice or aqueous extracts of one or more types of fruit or of the juice and aqueous extracts of one or more types of fruit which have been clarified by filtration or other means, and may contain permitted food additives and sweeteners.
  • Raspberry juice can be manufactured from fresh or frozen raspberries and a wide range of juice and related products are possible. Both clarified and cloudy juice can be manufactured.
  • Canned raspberries: Red raspberry cultivars are preferred for canning. The berries may either be packed in water or sugar syrup. The water-packed product can be used as pie fillings and toppings. The sugar syrup-packed berries can be used as dessert fruit.

Redcurrants

  • IQF redcurrants: Fresh redcurrants are individually quick-frozen to produce a product that maintains its individual identity and gives the perception of ‘fresh fruit’. This makes it ideal for inclusion into muffins, other bakery products and fillings. Frozen redcurrants can also be incorporated into a mixture of other IQF berries/currants. The IQF method is used since it best preserves the cell structure, texture, colour, flavour and aroma of the currants.
  • Frozen redcurrants: Fresh redcurrants are frozen in the container (straight pack), with or without the addition of sugar. Unsweetened frozen redcurrants are used in the preparation of wine, juice, jellies and bakery fillings, while the sweetened product is used as a base ingredient for pie toppings, syrup fillings and yoghurt flavouring.
  • Redcurrant jam: Jam is defined as the product consisting of whole fruit, pieces of fruit or fruit pulp that is cooked with sugar until syrup with the desired solids content is formed. Upon cooling, it becomes a soft gel. Redcurrant jam is produced from fresh or frozen redcurrants harvested at the mature ripe stage to ensure maximum flavour, colour and pectin development.
  • Redcurrant juice is the crushed and pasteurised liquid derived from fresh or frozen redcurrants which can be used as a beverage or in confectionery products, beverages, sauces, flavourings and fillings. A wide range of juice and related products can be manufactured. Clear redcurrant juice has relatively little flavour, and therefore clarification is an optional process. The flavour of clarified juice can be corrected by blending with other types of clear fruit juices.

Strawberries

  • Dried strawberries have a moisture content of between 2 and 8%, have an intense flavour and work well in dry baking mixes. The dried strawberries have a cooked flavour and a brown colour.
  • Frozen strawberries frozen in a container are called straight-pack frozen strawberries. This product is used to make fillings, toppings, syrups and soups. Yoghurt manufacturers can also use it as a fruit flavour.
  • Strawberry concentrate is basically purée that has been concentrated. The strawberries are pulped, depectinised and concentrated to produce a product that can be used in confectionery products, beverages, sauces, flavourings and fillings and in fruit juices after dilution. The product is preserved by concentration and freezing.
  • Strawberry jam is produced from fresh or frozen strawberries harvested at full maturity. Jam is a product which consist of whole fruit, pieces of fruit, fruit pulp or fruit purée of one or more types of fruit, with fruit juice or concentrated fruit juice as an optional ingredient and may contain permitted food additives and sweeteners.
  • Canned strawberries are prepared from fresh berries. The strawberries may either be packed in water or sugar syrup. The water-packed product can be used as fruit fillings and toppings. The sugar syrup-packed berries can be used as dessert fruit.
  • Strawberry jelly is produced by concentrating and gelating unsweetened strawberry juice or strawberry syrup. Jelly consists of either the juice or aqueous extracts of one or more types of fruit or of the juice and aqueous extracts of one or more types of fruit which have been clarified by filtration or other means, and may contain permitted food additives and sweeteners.
  • Strawberry juice may be manufactured from fresh or frozen strawberries, and a wide range of juice and related products is possible. Both clarified and cloudy strawberry juice can be manufactured. Pure fruit juice contains no additives, but several other related ready-to-drink products can also be manufactured.
  • Strawberry nectar is a cloudy strawberry juice containing added sugar, stabilisers, acidulants and other optional ingredients such as preservatives. Strawberry nectar can be manufactured from fresh strawberries of good quality, frozen strawberry purée or aseptically bulk-stored strawberry purée.
  • Strawberry purée is the pulped, strained and pasteurised liquid from strawberries preserved by freezing or aseptic packaging/bulk storage. It is an intermediate product that can be further processed to produce confectionery products, beverages, sauces, flavourings and fillings as well as fruit juices (nectars).

Written by Theresa Siebert, Agricultural Research Council – Institute for Agricultural Engineering

Agro-processing of berries and cherries

The manual of the Agro-processing of Berries Vol. 2 contains complete information on the products discussed above, as well as many other processing methods, and is available from the Agricultural Research Council – Institute for Agricultural Engineering (ARC-IAE). Contact Elmarie Stoltz on 012 842 4017 or email stoltze@arc.agric.za for more information.

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