Dried onion is one of the main production culture among dried vegetables. The demand for dried onionexceeds the demand for other vegetable cultures. Nowadays production of dried onion on the territory of the Russian Federation is only developing. Taking into account the fact that dehydrated onion is only importing in the amount of two 40 foot containers a day(!), the market saturation period for quality domestic products is far from being done. There's a big deposit for import replacement. For example, each year only the Astrakhan region at least 100 thousand tons of fresh onion is put aside, as it is unfit to selling. Such onion is unfit only because it doesn't have a proper market condition. It would be economically justified to process such raw material and place it for the needs of Russian enterprises.
As for the production technology of dried onions, like many other dried vegetables, it is manufactured on the drying equipment of the belt and boxing type. Belt dryer are more suitable for large production sites where it is possible to process raw materials from 1 ton per hour. Box dryers may be applied by smaller enterprises, where it is not possible to accommodate a large processing complex.
Before starting to dry onion, it needs to be pre- treated firstly. A charachteristic of onion processing lies in the difficulty of trimming the neck and stem, as well as in cleaning the husk. This could be done using special technological equipment, which is designed by our specialists and integrated into a common line. If the production complex for vegetables drying has a storehouse in its territory, it becomes possible to implement a system for transporting raw materials, which will increase the automation of the process.
So, after the first phase of onion cleaning and husks and wastes removal, it needs to be carefully cleaned in cold influent water, or under a shower device. After water run-off the onion is loaded to the cutting machine. Onion cutting-shape is a ring, 3-4 mm thick. No blanching is required after cutting. However to maintain high vitamin C content in the product, and to provide better product characteristics, the onion is treated with a special technological solution.
There are several types of onion cutting.
- Dried onions flocks.This is the largest cutting, where the rings of 3-4 mm are dried. Such onions shall be of up to 14% humidity. But usually humidity is about 8%.
- Crushed dried onions. Crushing occurs after the drying phase. Onions are being crushed on special crushing equipment, reaching 8-10 mm fractions.
- Onion powder. To produce onion powder, it is necessary to use dried onions with a maximum of 6-8% humidity. Very often small, burned onions that do not fit into the two previous fractions are used to manufacture powder. At the end of technological process, different factions of dried onions pass through magnetic detectors and arrive for packing.
At the end of the technological process of different factions onion is packed either in polypropylene bags or in cardboard boxes. The dried onions produced by our technologies can be stored without losing their product qualities up to 2 years in regular packaging