More than 2,000 food and beverage professionals from 60 countries participated in HPP Innovation Week 2021, an online conference on High Pressure Processing (HPP). The five-day event was organized by Hiperbaric, the global leader in manufacturing high pressure processing equipment.

HPP Innovation Week brought together more than 80 speakers to discuss the latest High Pressure Processing (HPP) trends and innovations for food and beverage safety and quality. The online meeting served to highlight the prominent role of HPP as the most effective non-thermal technology for the treatment and preservation of food and beverage products.

Food Safety, Shelf Life Extension and Nutrient Preservation Biggest Benefits of HPP, Survey Shows

A survey was conducted as part of the online conference. Among the findings: 26.6% of food manufacturers say that food safety is the most important reason they use HPP, followed by shelf life extension (25%) and nutrient preservation (25%).

Other survey findings:

  • Nearly 70% say their companies have been affected by consumer demand for more fresh food and beverages.
  • More than one-third (34.8%) say they’re formulating new, fresh products, and 34.4% say they’re open to different processing methods that allow for fresher products.
  • The High Pressure Processing mark, created by the Cold Pressure Council, also is gaining popularity. A survey conducted during the online conference found that nearly 77% of manufacturers and 75% of retailers believe HPP should be listed on the food label.

The virtual conference brought together manufacturers, retailers, food service companies, regulatory, academic leaders, and others in the HPP industry to discuss the latest trends and updates in the industry.

The food and beverage industry has experienced in recent years, and even more so during the global COVID-19 pandemic, a notable change in consumer demand for fresh, healthy and natural products, and prepared without harmful additives, used historically for its conservation. High pressure processing enables producers and retailers to meet consumer demand, extend the shelf life of their products, inactivate pathogenic bacteria responsible for spoilage, and reduce food waste.

HPP Emerging Applications: “Ready-to-Eat” (RTE) Meals and Plant-Based Products

During the event, ready-to-eat (RTE) meals and plant-based products were shown to be growing rapidly due to consumer demand for foods with a clean label and a longer shelf life.

Chris Kirby, Founder of Ithaca Hummus, said, “Ithaca Hummus separates itself from the competition by using fresh ingredients, such as cold-pressed lemon juice, fresh garlic, in conjunction with using HPP, a cold preservation method which allows the fresh ingredients to never be heated and maintains its fresh, home-made characteristics.”

Dane Sandridge, Chief Commercial Officer of Sandridge, a manufacturer of RTE meals, stated, “HPP allowed us to eliminate acidifiers and preservatives and shorten the overall length of the ingredient statement in our wet salads. In addition, we were able to extend the shelf life on items that primarily needed those acidifiers and preservatives.

“HPP gave us another extension of our food safety piece and the ability to really go back and challenge our chefs to produce recipes that were colorful, bright, lively and that without acidifiers or preservatives.

“HPP also expanded our geographical region of sales. Primarily before 2008, we had 13 to 15 semi-trucks in our own fleet. Today, we have over 35 and we’re shipping to all 50 states, including Puerto Rico. This was all done possible without adding any preservatives to the products.”

Other emerging topics included in-bulk HPP with French co-packer Hermes Boissons, and pet food and HPP with Steve’s Real Food, along with participation from the Cold Pressure Council.

Andrés Hernando, CEO of Hiperbaric, "The world of food is changing. We are experiencing an authentic revolution that affects us all and HPP is the answer to new trends in this sector". Today's consumers demand minimally processed foods and beverages with very specific characteristics: that they are fresh and natural, without additives or preservatives, with a high nutritional value, ready for consumption, with a long shelf life and 100% safe. High pressure processing technology or HPP provides just these benefits to products and therefore to consumers.”

Roberto Peregrina, Hiperbaic USA Director at Hiperbaric, stated, “As the global leaders in High Pressure Processing technology, we’re excited to have provided a forum for education, networking, and collaboration while demonstrating how HPP can make a meaningful impact on food and beverage safety and quality during HPP Innovation Week. The event shed light on the latest innovations taking place in the industry.”

Sustainable Packaging

Packaging plays a key role for an HPP product to be successful, and this was shown with different live demonstrations, tests, and product validations during the event. The latest innovation in sustainable HPP packaging is the Petainer Keg, the world’s first HPP keg for juices & beverages. This keg is revolutionizing how HPP beverages are packaged and is a breakthrough global innovation that offers beverage manufacturers safe, sustainable, and cost-efficient packaging.

The HPP Innovation Week program has also addressed other topics, including  “Discovering high pressure processing (HPP)”; “HPP equipment and systems”; “Marketing, regulation and validation and the global HPP market.”

HPP Incubator: Turning Your HPP Product Ideas Into Reality

During HPP Innovation Week, Hiperbaric showcased their newly launched HPP Incubator Centers in Miami and Burgos, Spain, an initiative that offers brands free HPP testing and consulting for packaging, product development and validation studies.

Vinicio Serment-Moreno, HPP Applications & Food Processing Specialist, who leads the HPP Incubator in Miami, said, “We allow companies of all sizes to use our HPP Incubator. Our goal in creating the incubator is to educate and help companies determine if HPP is a viable technology for their products. Whether it is creating a new recipe in our kitchen or conducting free tests for shelf-life extension challenge studies, Hiperbaric is here to guide you throughout the process. We take pride in seeing HPP products succeed on the market.” 

About Hiperbaric

Formed in 1999, Hiperbaric designs, develops, produces and markets its high pressure processing equipment internationally. The company is recognized for its trust, customer support, teamwork and continuous R&D efforts.

Hiperbaric has installed more than 300 machines in more than 40 countries across five continents, making the company the global leader in HPP technology with the most reliable and economic machines on the market. Hundreds of companies worldwide use Hiperbaric equipment to process juices and beverages, meat, fish and seafood, fruits and vegetables, dairy and ready-to-eat meals.

With headquarters in Burgos, Spain, a U.S. office in Miami, and commercial and technical offices in Mexico, Asia and Oceania, Hiperbaric continues to explore HPP technology with new applications in different industrial sectors.