6 California Food Producer EDITION 2, 2017 Developing novel and sustainable food processing technologies becomes important to solve some challenging issues related to energy and water consumption, generation of wastewater, and food quality and safety for the food industry. Dr. Zhongli Pan, the Western Regional Research Center, U.S. Department of Agriculture-Agricultural Research Service, and the University of California, Davis, have been developing several sustainable technologies for peeling of fruits and vegetables and the drying of walnuts and rice using infrared heating. Steam and hot lye are the common technologies applied for the peeling of fruits and vegetables. Hot lye peeling uses chemicals and water and generates wastewater with high salinity that needs costly treatment before discharging to the environment. Moreover, steam peeling consumes a lot of energy and the peeled tomato usually has a soft texture that is an undesired quality attribute. Dr. Pan devel- oped and patented an infrared dry-peeling technology for fruits and vegetables, which has been successfully applied to tomatoes, pears, jujubes and peaches. The new dry-peel- ing technology uses infrared radiant energy (dry-heat), generated from electrical and natural gas emitters, to quickly heat the surfaces of fruits and vegetables without using water or chemicals. Extensive laboratory tests and mathematical modeling studies were carried out to optimize the processing conditions and equipment design parameters and scale up of the dry-peeling technology. With the collaboration of the Precision Canning Equipment, Inc., a pilot scale system was constructed, and successfully demonstrated to peel tomatoes at two commercial tomato processors in California. The results of pilot demonstrations showed high rates of fully peeled tomato up to 90%, compared to about 50% in commercial production. The quick infrared heating of the tomato surface minimized the temperature increase in the inner flesh of the tomato and produced much firmer and higher quality products and thinner peels. The new technology also reduced the peeling loss by more than Based on the technology and with the part- nership of Treasure8, Dr. Pan’s team com- mercialized the technology with a novel system for fruit and vegetable based crispy, healthy snacks using SIRDBD followed by hot air drying. Novel Infrared Heating Technologies for Peeling,