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Raisin inspection and storage

When the rolls of fruit arrive at the manufacturing plant, they are emptied out onto wire screens and shaken to remove dirt and other unwanted debris. They are also inspected to ensure that they meet previously determined specifications. In the United States, dried raisins are inspected by the United States Department of Agriculture to ensure that all state and federal food laws are followed. Factors such as moisture content, color, and taste are all used to evaluate the shipment. Based on their quality, the raisins are graded as either standard or substandard. Only the standard graded raisins can be immediately used.

Whether or not some of the fruit will be stored for later processing or moved to the production lines, is determined by the needs of the manufacturer. If the raisins are moved for storage, they are stacked outside the plant in temporary storage enclosures. These enclosures are constructed with polyethylene sheeting fastened to wooden frames. They are made tight enough to hold the fumigation gasses, which are applied periodically to inhibit insect growth. Methyl bromide and phosphine gases are the primary fumigants used.

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