Beans, Legumes, food storage


There is a market for low moisture foods that can be stored for long periods of time for use in disaster relief and other emergency situations. Split peas hermetically sealed in cans with a reduced oxygen atmosphere are available in the retail market, but the effect of long-term storage on the quality of the product is unknown. Ten samples of split peas representing 5 retail brands packaged in size No.10 cans and stored at room temperature were obtained from donors. Two fresh samples of split peas were purchased as controls. Samples ranged in age from <1 to 34 years. Can headspace oxygen, can seam integrity, and split pea water activity and color were evaluated. A 52-member consumer panel evaluated the samples, prepared as split pea soup, for appearance, aroma, texture, flavor, and overall acceptability using a 9-point hedonic scale. Acceptance for use in everyday and emergency situations was also determined. Can headspace oxygen ranged from 0.19 to 20.1%. All can seams were determined to be satisfactory. Water activity of the raw split peas ranged from 0.41 to 0.56. The green color of raw split peas decreased over time as shown by increasing CIE a* values. Flavor, appearance, texture, and overall acceptability hedonic scores ranged from 6.7 to 4.4 and decreased over time. Hedonic scores for appearance were correlated with the decrease in raw product green color (r2 = .928). Hedonic scores for texture declined over time, corresponding with increasing hardness of the peas. All samples had an acceptance in an emergency situation of over 75%. Results indicate split pea quality declines over time, but the product maintains sufficient sensory acceptance to be considered for use in applications requiring long-term storage.

Original Publication Citation

Chapman JS, Jefferies LK, Pike OA. July 27. Quality of hermetically packaged split peas during long-term storage. Poster presentation. Institute of Food Technologists Annual Meeting.

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Life Sciences


Nutrition, Dietetics, and Food Science