Nauni/Solan: Developed as a fast and effective alternative to the traditional methods, the apple cider vinegar technology developed by the scientists of Dr YS Parmar University of Horticulture and Forestry Nauni will soon find its way to the market. A Shimla based company has signed a non-exclusive license agreement with the university for the transfer of this technology. With this technology, production of apple cider vinegar can be taken as an alternative approach for complete utilization of culled apples and improving the livelihood of the farming community in the state.

Dr Rakesh Sharma, Dr VK Joshi and Dr Anju Dhiman, all scientists of the Department of Food Science and Technology of the university, have developed the technology under a DST sponsored project.

Hilly Foods, a company based at Jubbal has signed an agreement and paid technology fee to the university.

Under this agreement, the company will use the university’s technology to manufacture and sell the cider vinegar. The company will also acknowledge the university technology on its product label.

Unlike the traditional methods, which are slow and result in poor quality vinegar, the university’s new technology has managed to overcome the problems. The scientists of the university undertook research for around five years and solved the issues by optimizing various factors involved in the production of vinegar as well as base wine. After extensive research work, a modified process was developed to produce quality vinegar in comparatively lesser time.

While congratulating the scientists UHF Vice-Chancellor Dr HC Sharma said, “We have been successfully pushing our technology to enable farmers and agri-entrepreneurs to benefit from the quality research and technology developed by the university. The technology will be a boon for the apple industry in Himachal Pradesh, as a large quality of culled apples (low-grade size and deformed apples) goes waste each year mainly due to the lack of appropriate processing technology in the production area.”

Vinegars are traditional condiments, which are used as a flavouring agent and food preservatives throughout the world. Among various types of non- synthetic or brewed vinegars, cider vinegar is prepared from apple juice or concentrate by fermentation and is used extensively in several countries. The demand for apple cider vinegar has increased manifold in the past few years due to its medicinal properties and its role in curing various ailments like arthritis, asthma, coughs, high blood sugar, high cholesterol etc.