• acidification;
  • ethanol;
  • organic acids;
  • stabilization;
  • vegetables

ABSTRACT:  Microbial growth did not occur when cucumbers were preserved without a thermal process by storage in solutions containing acetic acid, sodium benzoate, and calcium chloride to maintain tissue firmness. The concentrations of acetic acid and sodium benzoate required to ensure preservation were low enough so that stored cucumbers could be converted to the finished product without the need to wash out and discard excess acid or preservative. Since no thermal process was required, this method of preservation would be applicable for storing cucumbers in bulk containers. Acid tolerant pathogens died off in less than 24 h with the pH, acetic acid, and sodium benzoate concentrations required to assure the microbial stability of cucumbers stored at 30 °C. Potassium sorbate as a preservative in this application was not effective. Yeast growth was observed when sulfite was used as a preservative.