In recent years, computerized tomography (CT) has shown great potential for optimizing some food processes, despite being a technique designed primarily for medical diagnosis.
CT technology has been applied to different foods to measure, for example, the percentage of lean or the distribution of fat in pork or fish. It is also used to measure the salt concentration in ham pieces, since areas with a higher salt concentration are denser and therefore show up with a higher contrast in CT.
One application of CT, for example, is the evaluation of the effects that certain causes or alterations may have on salt during the production process of cured ham. From the stage of salting the hind legs to the drying of the ham, the CT images show how an increase in contrast is produced due to the gradual penetration of the salt and the reduction of the water content.
INSPECTRA develops artificial vision applications for the inspection and classification of images obtained by tomography from magnetic resonance and X-rays.
We have successfully tested real time analysis of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) of the interior of food. MRI is an effective non-invasive technique used in quality assessment of a wide variety of food products. The newest applications of MRI in food are: evaluation of body composition and fat distribution, salt and water distribution, muscle structure, cooking and freezing processes in meat and fish, cheese curing, moisture in cereals and cookies, ripening in fruits and vegetables.
Inspection of the inner of the food
Real-time MRI is a non-destructive method, accurate and fast method and has many advantages over traditional food quality control procedures. We also have experience in the use of X-ray computerized tomography with spectrography, allowing us to perform non-destructive analysis of the interior of the food in-line.
Our system is based on commercial high field magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) or computerized tomography (CT) system, which is adapted to allow the passage of products on a continuous tape.
The resolution of the images as well as the separation of the cuts are configured according to the type of application.
The system has the great advantage that it can be successfully applied to the inspection of any type of food, simply by varying the image processing algorithms.