5A Food process monitoring and product quality assessment

Micro and nanotechnologies offer unique opportunities to measure and detect molecules and organisms with higher specificity and sensitivity. Moreover these concepts provide better cost efficiency, speed and ease of use. In this programme research will be done to transfer these concepts to the economically important application field of food and nutrition. The results will enable the sector not only to monitor and control processes in the food industry more accurately, it will also provide tools to determine sensory qualities of food products and to effectively assess product quality and safety throughout the production and logistic chains.

The programme consists of three projects. Quality and safety of food products is the common denominator of the projects. One project aims at biological detection mechanisms for the detection of food borne pathogens and quantification of spoilage organisms. It focuses on quality and safety assessment in the various fresh food chains. The second project focuses on the measurement of molecules, e.g. in packaging, that correlate to specific product attributes like ripeness and quality status. It will provide the devices to present quality and safety information to the retailer and the consumer. The third project is directed towards the quantification of the ultimate food quality characteristic: appreciation by the consumer using assays based on human taste and olfactory receptors. The results will enable food companies and plant breeders to optimise their products and cultivars.

Back to theme 5: Food

Foto: Bram Saeys. 9-6-2011, STW NanoNext Karel V Utrecht

Programme Director:
Dr. ir. Maarten A. Jongsma (Wageningen UR-DLO)