In the fruit juice industry, membrane technology is used mainly to clarify the juice by means of ultrafiltration and microfiltration and to concentrate it by means of nanofiltration and reverse osmosis.

We look at enzyme immobilization techniques to improve filtration performance and operation methods to quantify fouling.

Membrane fouling is a critical issue and inhibits the broader application of membranes in the fruit production industry. Pectin and its derivatives form a gel-like structure over the membrane surface, thereby reducing the permeate flux. In order to degrade pectin, the raw juice is usually subjected to an enzymatic treatment with pectinase, which hydrolyses pectin and causes its protein complexes to flocculate. The resulting juice has reduced viscosity and a much lower pectin content, which is advantageous in the subsequent filtration processes.