Background: Gamma radiation is used
to disinfestations and decontamination of dried food.
Methods: The current study evaluates the outcome of gamma irradiation doses (0, 6 and 9 kGy) on chemical compositions and microbial load of apricot kernel during storage at ambient temperature.
Results: Results indicated that apricot kernels were rich in oil (40.27%), protein (21.78%) and essential minerals (2.87% ash). Crude protein & fat and reduced sugars were not significantly affected by different gamma irradiation doses. In contrast, a statistically significant difference for moisture ash and total sugar was reported in comparison with the irradiated ones. Doses of the used gamma irradiation reduced the mean total viable count (TVC), mould and yeast count (MYC) and the total coliform counts (TC) in apricot kernel below the detection limit, and it remained undetectably low in irradiated samples during all months of storage.
Conclusion: Gamma irradiation treatment may be a useful way for maintaining apricot kernel quality and can be used as a preservation method.