This is a poster presentation. Raw materials have a decisive influence on the quality of a product. Therefore it is important to check raw materials not only for quality and composition but also for identity. It is also essential to check material during the production process to prevent defective products and to save costs resulting from any out of specification batch. Such in-process measurements are also used for process control. The power of NIR spectroscopy includes both qualitative and quantitative analysis. Results can be obtained within a few seconds. Since no chemicals or time consuming sample preparation is necessary NIR spectroscopy is an ideal analytical method for at-line and in-line measurements. NIR spectroscopy is well established to measure moisture, protein, and fat – the three major constituents in food processing. For these three and a few other constituents a selection of 19 specific wavelengh filters can give all necessary information. But NIR spectroscopy is not only an appropriate tool to analyze these “standard parameters” it can also be very helpful when determining less conventional or minor parameters. Therefore often a higher flexibility regarding the wavelength selection is required which makes the collection of a full spectrum necessary. Some of these less common applications are the determination of caffeine in coffee, theobromine in chocolate or trans fatty acids in margarine. Other product specific parameters which have a strong influence on processing behaviour like the tenderness of peas or the degree of substitution in modified starch can also be measured by NIR.

© 1998 NIR Publications

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