high pressure processing (hpp) machine

Charlie Wettlaufer

What is HPP and Do I Need It?

What is HPP?

HPP stands for High Pressure Processing. I have heard other terms thrown around like High Pressure Pasteurization, and High Pressure Pascalization. In reality, Pascalization is the process of HPP, so the term High Pressure Pascalization is a bit redundant. Regardless of the specific words used, HPP is the process of putting tons of pressure on a substance to achieve microbial inactivation or to “alter the food attributes in order to achieve consumer-desired qualities” [Ohio State University].

HPP is done on juice that has already been pressed and bottled in plastic bottles. HPP does not work on glass bottles, because glass cannot withstand the force without breaking.

Do I need to HPP my juice before I sell it?

Under federal law, if you are going to sell juice wholesale (not direct to consumers), you need to process the juice in a way to meet the 5-log pathogen reduction performance standard. In laymen’s terms, you have to kill a bunch of the living stuff inside.  The law does not state that the method used to achieve the 5-log reduction has to be HPP. This can be done with a variety of ways such as heat, UV light, and HPP. Nobody’s into heat anymore, and UV light has some undesirable effects, and doesn’t work well on cloudy juices because the light has trouble penetrating the liquid.

If you are selling only direct to consumers, you do not need to process the juice under federal regulations, but you may have to if your local health department requires it. The easiest way to find out is to simply call your local health department they are usually very helpful in answering questions. Don’t wait until you’re trying to actually open your juice bar to ask; ask now.

Links and Reading

The Truth About HPP

OSU – High Pressure Processing

Hyperbaric – HPP Equipment