Tag Archives: solar

Solar Drying of Trop[ical Fruits – Free Online information.

Heres a short, only 20 pages long, and very practical “recipe book” for the drying of tropical fruit.

Solar drying in Nicaragua

from: University of California, Davis
(click image for full story online)

It is from a project run by University of California, Davis in Tanzania and Nicaragua on the introduction of a Concentrated Solar Power Dryer for the drying of vegetables.

The book carefully explains the steps, starting from a potentially soiled fruit, through preparation, pretreatment, drying and packaging for Tomatoes, Mangoes, Banana, Pineapple, Sapote and Pity (Dragon Fruit).

Simple and clear – its easy to recommend this book.

Food Dehydration Options – Free Online Technical Information.

This document, from US Agriculture, is a review of dehydration at a somewhat higher technology level than is often the case on this blog.

The technologies described include batch cabinet dryer, spray dryer and even the freeze dryer. The article also covers business, marketing and regulatory issues and has many link, unfortunately to mainly Amercan information.

ATTRA Dehydration Website

from: ATTRA
(click image for full story online)

The subjects covered by the document are:

  • Types of Dehydration
  • Drying as an On-Farm Added-Value Strategy
  • Product Development and Marketing
  • Regulations
  • References
  • Resources
  • There is an interesting reference to “solar drying” by which they mean drying in the open or what this Blog (and many technologists) terms sun drying. It again raises, this time for a food regulation point of view, the possible contamination of food dried in the open.

    …could not determine how California producers can legally sun-dry in the open or why no one in the health department has “picked up on it yet.” A possible explanation is that existing businesses are sometimes “grandfathered in” when new, tighter restrictions are published.

    I would by the way note that I have not yet managed to get a reply to by query to California Sun Dry about this issue.

    Email me you thoughts and ideas on this and I will publish them in a post!

    Fruit & Vegetable Drying – I

    I intend to do a series of posts on fruit and vegetable drying given that this is one of the simplest, safest and cheapest processing technologies. However, as I am always promoting that we need to start at the market side. We also need to define the sector we are working in.

    But first a photo to get us thinking away from the shriveled dark brown piece of “banana” that we are used to see.

    Flickr Photo Download_ Dried Fruit.jpg

    photo by ccarlstead
    (Creative Commons License)


    This attractive and tasty looking of fruit is on sale in bulk, in a market in Istanbul. While I have seen many markets selling bags of cereals in Sub Saharan African few seem to sell dried fruit which is essentially just as well preserved.

    Also of interest in this photo is that the fruit is not simply dried but glazed, dusted and prepared in different ways.

    These large quantities of dried fruit could represent fruit that was in excess of the demand for fresh fruit that could have been wasted if not dried and was possibly purchased at a low price. Otherwise it could have been fruit that was purposefully grown to be dried to provide food for use during the winter or even as a supplier to a dried fruit producer.

    So there’s lots to think about! which we will be doing over the next while in this series of posts.