Dried fruit has been around for centuries, as the art of preserving certain fruit was a good way to make sure that people were still able to enjoy fruit even in the colder seasons. By drying fruit, water was removed, and this prevented microbes in the fruit from growing. Drying fruit under the sun is still the most common way of preserving it, although other methods, such as forced drying in dehydrators, is also being used today. If you’re thinking of purchasing dried fruit for your food business or food establishment, there are some considerations and factors you need to think about. Let’s find out what these are so you can choose the best dried fruit for your needs.
The available fruit
Not all fruit is dried, but a lot of fruit can be dried. This includes apples, blueberries, apricots, cranberries, figs, dates, grapes (which can result in dried grape variations such as sultanas, currants, and the ever-popular raisins), papayas, mangoes, plums (which results in prunes), and pineapples. These are only the most common and popular ones, however, and more fruits are being experimented on as innovations come up.
The specifications of dried fruits
Most dried fruit can be 100% fruit, which means that they contain no additives. But there are other dried fruits which can be comprised of only 61% fruit. Additives such as sulphites may be added to the dried fruit so their flavour can be retained. Sulphites are also effective at retaining the colour of the fruit, preventing the fruit from browning. Be careful, however – some individuals may be sensitive or allergic to sulphites, so if you are serving dried fruit or producing dried fruit products, sulphites should be added to the list of ingredients. Sulphites can often be found in fruits such as dried mangoes, apples, pineapples, and apricots. Another additive or preservative, which is potassium sorbate, is usually found in prunes and dried figs, although most individuals aren’t allergic or sensitive to it.
Sometimes, a small quantity of oil is added to various dried fruit, which includes raisins, dates, and cranberries. The oil can help with the preservation of the fruit’s flavour and may also prevent each piece from sticking together. The oil doesn’t really make a big difference when it comes to adding fat to the fruit, and most individuals don’t have any problem with it either.
When you are choosing dried fruit for your business, make sure to get it from a good wholesale dried fruit supplier. A good supplier will be able to offer traceability and transparency – which means that they can tell you exactly where the fruit is coming from and how it is produced. It’s better to go for quality every time.