Azerbaijan, Baku, Jan. 7 / Trend I.Isabalayeva /
Extension of agricultural and other food products' shelf life will be possible in Azerbaijan starting 2015, the director of the Institute of radiation problems of the Azerbaijani National Academy of Sciences Adil Garibov told Trend on Monday.
He said, this will be possible following commissioning of the new sterilization device within joint project with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA). This device will treat different products with gamma irradiation, thus extending their period of use.
Meat and meat products, wheat, dried fruit, potatoes, wine, spices and other agricultural products can be treated with such safe irradiation.
Most of the wheat and potatoes get spoiled. In winter, only 30-40 percent of the apples are delivered to the population, the rest becomes rotten. This is caused by microorganisms, and irradiation is the most effective way to destroy them, Garibov said.
He said, when irradiated with small doses all microbes will be destroyed, and as the irradiation dose is small, these products will be safe for consumers. Irradiated fruits can be stored for one year, however they need to be packed in a special sterile manner.
Farmers will be able to apply for this service and by paying a certain amount, extend the shelf life of their products. As for the cost of the service, it will be set after the determination of the device's status, Garibov said.
He added that project documentation of the building where the device will be placed has been prepared and submitted to the Ministry of Finance and Economic Development. If the issue on financing building construction is resolved, the device can be placed there by the end of this year.
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