Seeking emerging dehydration technologies and processes

Posted by PepsiCoResponsive · Game Changer Technologies and Ideas · Deadline at 05/09/2018 · United States

Desired outcome

PepsiCo is seeking to identify emerging dehydration technologies in food and adjacent industries. Ideal technologies will have established feasibility within the past five years. Please review the complete tech call for specific areas PepsiCo is interested in.

Details of the Technology Call

Dehydration is critical to the PepsiCo’s Snack portfolio. The dehydration method has a large impact on the final taste, texture, and appearance of the finished snack. PepsiCo is interested in new methods to dehydrate food that produce novel and differentiated finished products. The alternative dehydration method could be leveraged from a non-food industry source.

PepsiCo currently dehydrates (sometimes concurrent with cooking) large amounts of foods and snacks and is very well versed in the state-of-the-art. Common dehydration technologies include frying, baking, extrusion and oven drying. Frying is the benchmark in speed, quality of finished product and energy input. Spray drying, freeze drying, vacuum drying and drying with radiant and electromagnetic sources such as IR, MW or RF are also well known to PepsiCo.

PepsiCo has conducted extensive research into dehydration technology. The list below details all the technologies that have been explored so far.

PepsiCo research into dehydration:
• Frying
• Convection ovens with forced air and other gases.
• This class of technologies includes a wide range of both conveyorized and rotary style dryers, high velocity impingement dryers, etc.
• Spray drying
• Pneumatic drying
• Fluidized bed
• Freeze dryer
• Vacuum drying
• Zeodration
• Refractance window
• Drum dryer (conduction dominant)
• Infrared
• Electromagnetic (MW, RF, etc.)
• Supercritical Fluid drying
• Ultrasonic and acoustic enhanced or assisted dehydration
• Osmotic dehydration
• Centrifugal drying
• Belt press

Successful technologies will:
• Produce products similar to current snack products (fried or baked potato chips, tortilla chips, pretzels, etc.), but dehydrate them faster and/or more efficiently than current technologies
• Create differentiated tastes and textures that are not currently in market or available from existing dehydration technologies
• Preferentially remove water over other constituents in food
• Dehydrate fruits and vegetables without severe thermal degradation (similar to freeze drying)
• Accommodate a broad range of surface area to volume ratios
• Examples: Flat slices, 3D extruded shapes / collets, etc. • Level of development:
• Early stage is acceptable
• Proof of principle preferred

Possible solution areas

  • Possible approaches might include, but are not limited to:
    • Dehydration technologies adapted from non-food industry sources are of significant interest.
    • Pretreament technologies that enhance post-treatment dehydration.
    • Combinations of drying technologies that improve efficiency or create differentiated products o Combinations that provide a higher heat flux than frying or result in a texture and microstructure that are different from current market offerings should be emphasized

Previously attempted solutions (discarded)

  • Individual technologies that utilize only one form of drying technology from the list provided in the “Background” section above should be avoided unless the inventor can offer a step-change in the existing technology to dramatically change its cost or performance.

Related keywords

  • Automation, Robotics Control Systems
  • Industrial Manufacture
  • Drying
  • Packaging / Handling
  • Materials Technology
  • Process Plant Engineering
  • Separation Technologies
  • Adsorption
  • Technologies for the food industry
  • Food Packaging / Handling
  • Food Technology
  • Micro- and Nanotechnology related to agrofood
  • Agro and Marine biotech
  • Food and Beverages
  • Consumer Products
  • Chemicals and Materials
  • Industrial Equipment and Machinery
  • Motor vehicles, transportation equipment and parts
  • Manufacturing
  • Dehydration technology

About PepsiCo

Large Enterprise from United States

PepsiCo is the #1 Food and Beverage company in North America. Our broad range of more than 3,000 delicious products offer consumers convenient and affordable options in nearly every country around the world. Globally our food and beverages are consumed nearly 1 billion times each day. Twenty-two of the brands in our portfolio generate more than $1 billion each in retail sales every year.

The PepsiCo Open Innovation team is the upstream, externally facing, department within PepsiCo Global R&D. We are actively scouting for, identifying, and developing strategic partnerships with external collaborators. Our ultimate goal is to locate key external insights, business models, and technical unlocks that, when partnered with PepsiCo’s robust internal R&D expertise, will yield disruptive innovation in our core products and/or new and emerging products/ markets.

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