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Ph Meter

In: Computers and Technology

Submitted By zjram05
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pH meter: Vital tool for food processing

A pH meter is defined as a device that measures the pH level of a liquid solution by means of knowing the voltage amount of two electrodes submerged in a solution. The use of this tool is never new to us. It is commonly utilized in science laboratory activities in school to know the acidity and basicity of household materials people see everyday. However, our perception of its application is only limited by the idea that pH meters are mere “laboratory equipment” used in school. Many overlook its importance especially in food production. People, who consume food everyday do not know that these “mere tools”, called pH meters, are vitally needed in the food processing industries.

How are pH meters used in food processing?

Knowing the pH level and monitoring it all throughout the process of food manufacturing is a critical step in maintaining the production of high-quality foods. Making sure that the proper pH range is achieved during the physical and chemical reactions undergone by the food in the whole duration of the process is vital. Improper interpretation of pH tests can cause a huge drawback in the production of food. Incorrect measurement of pH level in jelly production for an instance, affects the consistency of the jelly and thus the product quality as a whole. Yogurt production, as an example, is generally dependent on the pH level for if ever, the proper pH level is not reached, discoloration (Yogurt becoming yellow) and insufficient tartness of the product can be noticed.
Not only that it affects the appearance, taste and quality of the food but also, incorrect pH levels can be extremely dangerous to the health of people who consumed the processed food. Growth of deadly bacteria in canned foods occurs when there is a low pH level. This will compromise the safety of the consumers and in the worst case, will cause death making it an issue to be closely looked upon. Thus, food bureaus and agencies ensure peoples safety by tightly observing and monitoring the correct pH level in this type of foods.
Accuracy in making pH tests is the most critical part of food processing. As mentioned above, inaccurate pH level reading is a risk to every consumer´s health. Commercial pH meters available in the market have an accuracy range from 0.1 to 0.001 pH units. Having a pH meter with the accuracy of 0.1 for an instance would mean that a pH level of a canned food having 4.6 pH units mean either 4.5 pH units or 4.7 pH units. At 4.7 pH level, bacteria will form in the said food product.
Different types of pH meters are used by food processing plants. These pH meters are widely available and are relatively inexpensive. The procedure of testing the acidity of foods and the necessities for the type of pH meter to be used in such tests are in accordance to the regulations of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and found in the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Title 21 Section 114.90.
Certain requirements and standards are set by the before mentioned agency, specifically, the use of accurate pH meters having a resolution of 0.1 pH units. This specification is mostly provided by most handheld pH meters, small-pocket pH meters and bench-top pH meters commercialized in the market.…...

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