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Keywords:

  • rice;
  • wheat;
  • buckwheat;
  • electron;
  • decontamination

ABSTRACT

Microbial load and viscosity of brown rice, rough rice, wheat and buckwheat exposed to electrons at different acceleration voltages were examined and compared with those irradiated with gamma-rays. Electrons at acceleration voltages of 180–225 kV reduced microbial loads of grains to <100 CFU/g. The viscosities of aqueous suspensions of grains treated with such low-energy electrons were almost the same or higher than those irradiated with gamma-rays at 0.1 kGy, much lower than necessary to disinfect grains. Results suggest that low-energy electrons can decontaminate grains with little starch degradation compared to gamma-rays.