Recent Advances in the Food Safety and Quality Management Techniques

A special issue of Foods (ISSN 2304-8158). This special issue belongs to the section "Food Quality and Safety".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (28 May 2023) | Viewed by 9482

Special Issue Editors


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Guest Editor
College of Biosystems Engineering and Food Science, Zhejiang University, Hangzhou 310058, China
Interests: bionanocomposites; polymer composites; nanocellulose; nanomaterials; active food packaging; postharvest preservation of compounds; encapsulation; essential oils; spectroscopy techniques; plant disease management
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
College of Biosystems Engineering and Food Science, Zhejiang University, Hangzhou 310058, China
Interests: agricultural informatization; refined management of tea gardens; research and development of production and processing equipment
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
College of Biosystems Engineering and Food Science, Zhejiang University, Hangzhou 310058, China
Interests: smart agriculture; sensors in agriculture; UAV; precision agriculture
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Food quality and safety are very important from the health and fiscal points of view. Nowadays, consumers are demanding safe products with high nutritional values, appealing sensory properties, and a long shelf life. Keeping environmental, nutritional, and microbial inactivation and decontamination aspects in mind, many promising technologies have been developed for the assessment of food quality and safety. In the food industry, thermal and nonthermal technologies have been used. Novel food processing technologies, such as the pulsed electric field, high-pressure processing, intense pulse lights, ohmic heating, ultrasound, irradiation, etc., impose less impact on the quality of food and the environment; thus, meeting the requirements of green technology. In recent years, the application of vibrational spectroscopy techniques, such as Raman spectroscopy, hyperspectral imaging, Fourier transform infrared (FTIR) spectroscopy, nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR), etc., has attracted considerable interest in food safety and quality management systems.

This Special Issue focuses on emerging techniques or advanced technologies, including thermal and nonthermal, spectroscopic and imaging techniques, sensors, and other advanced technologies applied for the assessment of the quality and safety of food and agricultural products. In addition, the Special Issue focuses on recent advances towards the development of fast and reliable methods for the management of the safety and quality of food and agricultural products.
Preferably, contributions should focus on fundamental results, mechanisms, and applications that would help gather the current status and highlight the recent advancements of these techniques. Both original research work and reviews are welcome.

Topics of interest for this Special Issue include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Various technologies such as analytical, electrochemical, and biochemical methods for analysing food safety and quality.
  • Emerging techniques, including nondestructive spectroscopic, imaging techniques combined with chemometrics, and biosensors for monitoring food systems.
  • Novel approaches to investigate the food quality and adulteration in food products.
  • Use of next-generation methods for improving food safety.
  • Thermal and nonthermal processing techniques for improving food quality.
  • In silico approach to predict food safety and quality.
  • Use of recent technologies in various food safety applications.
  • Computer vision technology for food quality evaluation.

Dr. Anand Babu Perumal
Prof. Dr. Xiaoli Li
Prof. Dr. Yong He
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Foods is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2900 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • novel and advanced technologies
  • emerging non-destructive methods
  • food safety and quality assessment
  • food quality improvement
  • food packaging and preservation
  • food nutrition
  • omics based techniques
  • next generation technologies

Published Papers (6 papers)

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Research

21 pages, 3401 KiB  
Article
Predictive Modeling Analysis for the Quality Indicators of Matsutake Mushrooms in Different Transport Environments
by Yangfeng Wang, Xinyi Jin, Lin Yang, Xiang He and Xiang Wang
Foods 2023, 12(18), 3372; https://doi.org/10.3390/foods12183372 - 08 Sep 2023
Viewed by 1093
Abstract
Matsutake mushrooms, known for their high value, present challenges due to their seasonal availability, difficulties in harvesting, and short shelf life, making it crucial to extend their post-harvest preservation period. In this study, we developed three quality predictive models of Matsutake mushrooms using [...] Read more.
Matsutake mushrooms, known for their high value, present challenges due to their seasonal availability, difficulties in harvesting, and short shelf life, making it crucial to extend their post-harvest preservation period. In this study, we developed three quality predictive models of Matsutake mushrooms using three different methods. The quality changes of Matsutake mushrooms were experimentally analyzed under two cases (case A: Temperature control and sealing measures; case B: Alteration of gas composition) with various parameters including the hardness, color, odor, pH, soluble solids content (SSC), and moisture content (MC) collected as indicators of quality changes throughout the storage period. Prediction models for Matsutake mushroom quality were developed using three different methods based on the collected data: multiple linear regression (MLR), support vector regression (SVR), and an artificial neural network (ANN). The comparative results reveal that the ANN outperforms MLR and SVR as the optimal model for predicting Matsutake mushroom quality indicators. To further enhance the ANN model’s performance, optimization techniques such as the Levenberg–Marquardt, Bayesian regularization, and scaled conjugate gradient backpropagation algorithm techniques were employed. The optimized ANN model achieved impressive results, with an R-Square value of 0.988 and an MSE of 0.099 under case A, and an R-Square of 0.981 and an MSE of 0.164 under case B. These findings provide valuable insights for the development of new preservation methods, contributing to the assurance of a high-quality supply of Matsutake mushrooms in the market. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Recent Advances in the Food Safety and Quality Management Techniques)
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16 pages, 2667 KiB  
Article
Towards a Multispectral Imaging System for Spatial Mapping of Chemical Composition in Fresh-Cut Pineapple (Ananas comosus)
by Kaveh Mollazade, Norhashila Hashim and Manuela Zude-Sasse
Foods 2023, 12(17), 3243; https://doi.org/10.3390/foods12173243 - 28 Aug 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 937
Abstract
With increasing public demand for ready-to-eat fresh-cut fruit, the postharvest industry requires the development and adaptation of monitoring technologies to provide customers with a product of consistent quality. The fresh-cut trade of pineapples (Ananas comosus) is on the rise, favored by [...] Read more.
With increasing public demand for ready-to-eat fresh-cut fruit, the postharvest industry requires the development and adaptation of monitoring technologies to provide customers with a product of consistent quality. The fresh-cut trade of pineapples (Ananas comosus) is on the rise, favored by the sensory quality of the product and mechanization of the cutting process. In this paper, a multispectral imaging-based approach is introduced to provide distribution maps of moisture content, soluble solids content, and carotenoids content in fresh-cut pineapple. A dataset containing hyperspectral images (380–1690 nm) and reference measurements in 10 regions of interest of 60 fruit (n = 600) was prepared. Ranking and uncorrelatedness (based on ReliefF algorithm) and subset selection (based on CfsSubset algorithm) approaches were applied to find the most informative wavelengths in which bandpass optical filters or light sources are commercially available. The correlation coefficient and error metrics obtained by cross-validated multilayer perceptron neural network models indicated that the superior selected wavelengths (495, 500, 505, 1215, 1240, and 1425 nm) resulted in prediction of moisture content with R = 0.56, MAPE = 1.92%, soluble solids content with R = 0.52, MAPE = 14.72%, and carotenoids content with R = 0.63, MAPE = 43.99%. Prediction of chemical composition in each pixel of the multispectral images using the calibration models yielded spatially distributed quantification of the fruit slice, spatially varying according to the maturation of single fruitlets in the whole pineapple. Calibration models provided reliable responses spatially throughout the surface of fresh-cut pineapple slices with a constant error. According to the approach to use commercially relevant wavelengths, calibration models could be applied in classifying fruit segments in the mechanized preparation of fresh-cut produce. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Recent Advances in the Food Safety and Quality Management Techniques)
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18 pages, 14845 KiB  
Article
Unraveling the Mechanism of StWRKY6 in Potato (Solanum tuberosum)’s Cadmium Tolerance for Ensuring Food Safety
by Guandi He, Muhammad Saleem, Tingfei Deng, Zhuoyan Zhong, Tengbing He and Jiahai Wu
Foods 2023, 12(12), 2303; https://doi.org/10.3390/foods12122303 - 07 Jun 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1259
Abstract
The WRKY transcription factor plays a crucial role in plant stress adaptation. Our research has found that WRKY6 in Solanum tuberosum (potatoes) is closely related to cadmium (Cd) tolerance. Therefore, investigating the mechanism of StWRKY6 in plant resistance to Cd toxicity is of [...] Read more.
The WRKY transcription factor plays a crucial role in plant stress adaptation. Our research has found that WRKY6 in Solanum tuberosum (potatoes) is closely related to cadmium (Cd) tolerance. Therefore, investigating the mechanism of StWRKY6 in plant resistance to Cd toxicity is of great scientific importance for food safety. This research further analyzed the gene structure and functional regions of the nuclear transcription factor WRKY6 in potatoes, discovering that StWRKY6 contains W box, GB/box, ABRE, and other elements that can act as a nuclear transcription regulatory factor to execute multiple functional regulations. The results of the heterologous expression of StWRKY6 in Arabidopsis under Cd stress showed that the overexpression line (StWRKY6-OE) had significantly higher SAPD values and content of reactive oxygen species scavenging enzymes than the wild type, indicating that StWRKY6 plays a crucial role in protecting the photosynthetic system and promoting carbohydrate synthesis. Transcriptome analysis also revealed that the Cd-induced expression of StWRKY6 up-regulated many potential gene targets, including APR2, DFRA, ABCG1, VSP2, ERF013, SAUR64/67, and BBX20, which are involved in Cd chelation (APR2, DFRA), plant defense (VSP2, PDF1.4), toxic substance efflux (ABCG1), light morphology development (BBX20), and auxin signal (SAUR64/67). These genes coordinate the regulation of Cd tolerance in the StWRKY6 overexpression line. In summary, this study identified a potential gene set of the co-expression module of StWRKY6, providing useful evidence for the remediation of Cd-contaminated soil and the genetic breeding of low Cd-accumulating crops, thereby ensuring food safety. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Recent Advances in the Food Safety and Quality Management Techniques)
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15 pages, 2891 KiB  
Article
Ultrasonic Wave Mode-Based Application for Contactless Density Measurement of Highly Aerated Batters
by Michael Metzenmacher, Dominik Geier and Thomas Becker
Foods 2023, 12(9), 1927; https://doi.org/10.3390/foods12091927 - 08 May 2023
Viewed by 1155
Abstract
An ultrasonic wave mode-based method for density measurement in highly foamed batters was developed. Therefore, a non-contact ultrasonic sensor system was designed to generate signals for batch-wise processes. An ultrasonic sensor, containing a piezoelectric ceramic at the fundamental longitudinal frequency of 2 MHz, [...] Read more.
An ultrasonic wave mode-based method for density measurement in highly foamed batters was developed. Therefore, a non-contact ultrasonic sensor system was designed to generate signals for batch-wise processes. An ultrasonic sensor, containing a piezoelectric ceramic at the fundamental longitudinal frequency of 2 MHz, was used to take impedance measurements in pulse-echo mode. The ultrasonic signals were processed and analysed wave-mode wise, using a feature-driven approach. The measurements were carried out for different mixing times within a container, with the attached ultrasonic sensor. Within the biscuit batter, the change to the ultrasonic signals caused by density changes during the batter-mixing process was monitored (R2 = 0.96). The density range detected by the sensor ranges between 500 g/L and 1000 g/L. The ultrasonic sensor system developed also shows a reasonable level of accuracy for the measurements of biscuit batter variations (R2 > 0.94). The main benefit of this novel technique, which comprises multiple wave modes for signal features and combines these features with the relevant process parameters, leads to a more robust system as regards to multiple interference factors. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Recent Advances in the Food Safety and Quality Management Techniques)
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20 pages, 8330 KiB  
Article
Analysis of Dynamics and Diversity of Microbial Community during Production of Germinated Brown Rice
by Gaoji Yang, Juanjuan Xu, Yuanmei Xu, Rui Li and Shaojin Wang
Foods 2023, 12(4), 755; https://doi.org/10.3390/foods12040755 - 09 Feb 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1479
Abstract
Sprouts may be contaminated with different pathogenic and spoilage microorganisms, which lead far too easily to foodborne outbreaks. The elucidations of microbial profiles in germinated brown rice (BR) are important, but the changes in the microbial composition during germination are unknown. This study [...] Read more.
Sprouts may be contaminated with different pathogenic and spoilage microorganisms, which lead far too easily to foodborne outbreaks. The elucidations of microbial profiles in germinated brown rice (BR) are important, but the changes in the microbial composition during germination are unknown. This study aimed to investigate the microbiota composition and to monitor the dominant microbial dynamics in BR during germination using both culture-independent and -dependent methods. BR samples (HLJ2 and HN) were collected from each stage of the germination processing. The populations of microbes (total viable counts, yeast/mold counts, Bacillus cereus, and Enterobacteriaceae) of two BR cultivars increased markedly with the prolongation of the germination time. High-throughput sequencing (HTS) showed that the germination process significantly influenced the microbial composition and reduced the microbial diversity. Similar microbial communities were observed between the HLJ2 and the HN samples, but with different microbial richness. The bacterial and fungal alpha diversity achieved the maximum for ungerminated samples and declined significantly after soaking and germination. During germination, Pantoea, Bacillus, and Cronobacter were the dominant bacterial genera, but Aspergillus, Rhizopus, and Coniothyrium dominated for the fungi in the BR samples. The predominance of harmful and spoilage microorganisms in BR during germination is mainly from contaminated seeds, which highlights the potential risk of foodborne illness from sprouted BR products. The results provide new insight into the microbiome dynamics of BR and may help to establish effective decontamination measures against pathogenic microorganisms during sprout production. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Recent Advances in the Food Safety and Quality Management Techniques)
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18 pages, 4568 KiB  
Article
Ethylene Response Factor MaERF012 Modulates Fruit Ripening by Regulating Chlorophyll Degradation and Softening in Banana
by Hangcong Chen, Xiuhua Lai, Lihua Wang, Xueping Li, Weixin Chen, Xiaoyang Zhu and Zunyang Song
Foods 2022, 11(23), 3882; https://doi.org/10.3390/foods11233882 - 01 Dec 2022
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1783
Abstract
Ethylene response factors (ERFs) are one of largest plant-specific transcription factor families involved in fruit ripening. However, the regulatory mechanism by which ERFs modulate fruit yellowing and softening remains unknown in banana. We previously found that the transcription of MaERF012 was closely related [...] Read more.
Ethylene response factors (ERFs) are one of largest plant-specific transcription factor families involved in fruit ripening. However, the regulatory mechanism by which ERFs modulate fruit yellowing and softening remains unknown in banana. We previously found that the transcription of MaERF012 was closely related to ‘Fenjiao’ banana fruit ripening. Herein, we found that MaERF012 was differentially expressed in the fruit pulp and peel and was closely related to fruit ripening. MaERF012 activated the promoter activity of one chlorophyll degradation gene (MaSGR1), two starch degradation genes (MaGWD1 and MaAMY3), and three cell wall degradation genes (MaPL8, MaEXP-A8, and MaXYL23-like), which were tested by EMSA, Y1H, and DLR. Transient overexpression of MaERF012 accelerates fruit ripening by promoting fruit yellowing and softening by up-regulating the transcription of chlorophyll, starch, and cell wall degradation genes. Over-expression of MaERF012 alters the transcriptome profiles of the fruit peel and pulp, and the differentially expressed genes were mainly enriched in starch and sucrose metabolism, plant hormone signal transduction, biosynthesis of secondary metabolism, and fructose and mannose metabolism. Overall, the data showed that MaERF012 acts as a transcriptional activator by regulating fruit ripening by activating the transcription of chlorophyll, starch, and cell wall degradation genes. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Recent Advances in the Food Safety and Quality Management Techniques)
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