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I am looking for a natural preservative (citric acid?) for candied citrus that would extend its shelf life---

We make chocolates with candied oranges and lemons we grow on our ranch and sell to retail stores.  They would like a longer shelf life.  Currently we are candying dices and slices of oranges and lemons in a solution of sugar water (boiling for one hour) and air drying on racks for 24 hours; sugaring again when dry, and using in chocolate barks and orange slices.  Is there a natural preservative we can use in this process?

Thank you!