pas·​teur·​i·​za·​tion | \ ˌpas-chə-rə-ˈzā-shən How to pronounce pasteurization (audio) , ˌpas-tyə-, -tə- \

Definition of pasteurization

1 : partial sterilization of a substance and especially a liquid (such as milk) at a temperature and for a period of exposure that destroys objectionable organisms without major chemical alteration of the substance
2 : irradiation of food products

Examples of pasteurization in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The pasteurization issue is specific to the Whole Chocolate Milk product. Yoni Heisler, BGR, 25 Sep. 2021 According to Bob Roberts, professor and head of food science at Pennsylvania State University, there are two types of bacteria in milk: those that survive the pasteurization process and those that are introduced afterward. USA TODAY, 5 Aug. 2021 Founded in May 2012, Suja quickly became a market leader in organic beverages by using high-pressure processing, a cold pasteurization technique that kills harmful bacteria while preserving taste and nutrition. Rob Nikolewski, San Diego Union-Tribune, 13 July 2021 The pasteurization provides more opportunity for flavor to develop under heat. Washington Post, 12 July 2021 Straus’s advocacy attracted the attention of President Theodore Roosevelt, who ordered an investigation into the health benefits of pasteurization. New York Times, 27 Apr. 2021 Instead, pasteurization reduces the risk of refermentation while preserving flavor and sugar content. Claire Porter, Popular Mechanics, 25 May 2021 Raw milk is milk that has not been put through the pasteurization process that kills most bacteria. Claire Ballor, Dallas News, 19 May 2021 Joesph explains the process like this: The first step is ultra-high temperature pasteurization, which refers to the processing temperature. Kristy Alpert, Better Homes & Gardens, 18 May 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'pasteurization.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of pasteurization

1886, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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The first known use of pasteurization was in 1886

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Last Updated

29 Sep 2021

Cite this Entry

“Pasteurization.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 22 Oct. 2021.

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English Language Learners Definition of pasteurization

: a process in which a liquid (such as milk or cream) is heated to a temperature that kills harmful germs and then cooled quickly


pas·​teur·​i·​za·​tion | \ ˌpas-chə-rə-ˈzā-shən How to pronounce pasteurization (audio) , ˌpa-stə- \

Kids Definition of pasteurization

: the process of heating a liquid to a temperature to kill germs and then rapidly cooling it


variants: also British pasteurisation \ ˌpas-​chə-​rə-​ˈzā-​shən, ˌpas-​tə-​ How to pronounce pasteurization (audio) \

Medical Definition of pasteurization

1 : partial sterilization of a substance and especially a liquid (as milk) at a temperature and for a period of exposure that destroys pathogenic microorganisms
2 : partial sterilization of perishable food products (as fruit or poultry) with radiation (as gamma rays emitted by cobalt 60)

More from Merriam-Webster on pasteurization

Nglish: Translation of pasteurization for Spanish Speakers Encyclopedia article about pasteurization


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