Effect of Calcium Chloride and Alum on Fermentation, Desalting, and Firmness Retention of Cucumber Pickles


  • The research support and supplies provided by Pickle Packers International, Inc., Dow Chemical, USA, Green Bay Food Co. and Microlife Technics, Inc. are gratefully acknowledged.


The effects of CaCl2 in cucumber pickle fermentation and storage brines on fermentation, desalting and retention of mesocarp firmness after processing were determined. Also, the influence of post-desalting treatments with alum and CaCl2 on firmness of processed pickle was evaluated. Fermentation and desalting were unaffected by CaCl2 treatment of fermentation brines. However, exposure of pickles to CaCl2 during fermentation and brine storage substantially reduced softening after processing. Post-desalting treatment with alum and/or CaCl2 of pickles not previously exposed to CaCl2 also reduced softening. Retention of firmness was maximized in pickles processed from fermentation and storage brines containing CaCl2 and treated with alum or CaCl2 after desalting.