Piga, Antonio <1965- > and Usai, Marianna and Marchetti, Mauro and Foddai, Marzia and Del Caro, Alessandra and Meier, Peter and Onorati, Vincenzo and Vinci, Francesco (2007) Influence of different drying parameters on the composition of volatile compounds of thyme and rosemary cultivated in Sardinia. In: Food and agricultural products: processing and innovations: proceedings of the 3. International symposium CGIR section VI, 24-26 settembre 2007, Napoli, Italia. p. 1-13. Conference or Workshop Item.
The shelf life of spices is traditionally extended by drying. Fresh herbs, due to their high water content, undergo microorganism growth and adverse biochemical reactions. On the other hand drying may result in a lot of physical and chemical alterations. Air and oven-dehydration are the main methods used to stabilize spices. During oven drying, in general, losses of volatile compounds are directly dependent on the temperature and time used. This paper deals with the effect of different drying temperatures and air fluxes on the volatiles in rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis L.) and thyme (Thymus officinalis L.) cultivated in Sardinia. Fresh leaves were collected and soon divided in two batches, which were subjected to hydro distillation and GC-MS analysis, the first batch as fresh, the second one after drying in a laboratory pilot dryer. Three drying temperatures were used, 30, 38 and 45°C, and for each one two airflow rates were set. The fresh and dried plant material were hydro distilled for 4 hours using a Clevenger-type apparatus (Italian Official Pharmacopeias X). The oils (liquid and light yellow) were recovered directly from above the distillate without adding any solvent and stored at –20°C before analyses, which were carried out on two replicates of each sample by gas chromatography, using a flame ionization detector. The diluted samples were injected using a split/splitless automatic injector (using 2,6-dimethylphenol as internal standard). Qualitative analysis was done by GC/Mass and mass units were monitored from 10 to 450 at 70 eV. Results of the influence of the different drying conditions on volatile compounds of the two herbs will be reported.
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