Special Issue "Sustainable Food Processing and Engineering"

A special issue of Sustainability (ISSN 2071-1050). This special issue belongs to the section "Sustainable Agriculture, Food and Wildlife".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 30 June 2020.

Special Issue Editor

Dr. Olivier Vitrac
Website1 Website2
Guest Editor
INRA, French National Institute for Agricultural Research, Joint Research Unit 1145 Food Processing and Engineering, Massy, France
Interests: safe-by-design, ecodesign, food packaging, risk assessment, minimal food processing

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Food processing and engineering have been and are still the solution to feeding the world. Food production and technologies have evolved from traditional post-harvesting processing to new consumption systems. The routes “from farm to fork” frequently reach, however, thousands of kilometers and are included within a multistage scheme of processing and packaging. Various substances (ingredients, additives, preservatives) are, in addition, intentionally added or non-intentionally transferred (contaminants) to processed food. Despite its numerous successes, the complexity of the value chain affects its efficiency with higher risks (food waste, nutritional loss, higher contaminations, possibly more allergens) and higher impacts (transportation, additional stabilization treatments, more packaging materials, and wastes). This Special Issue reports new sustainable food production strategies and discusses their readiness level. Without being exhaustive, they include: minimally and integrated food processing; aseptic packaging as an alternative to thermal treatments; packaging optimized for food transformation and zero waste; zero packaging solutions; emerging food processes; ecodesign of food plants, sustainable food production and supply chains; bridging food and biorefinery industries; home as a food factory; revisiting shelf-life concepts to reduce food wastes, formulation, and processing requirements; cloud computing and artificial intelligence for food production on demand; and education in responsible food engineering.

Dr. Olivier Vitrac
Guest Editor

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 papers will be 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. Sustainability 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 1800 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.


  • Responsible food engineering
  • Ecodesign of food, packaging, process, and plant
  • Life cycle assessment of food production systems
  • Clean food plants
  • Computer-aided design of agricultural and food processes
  • Efficient food-supply chains
  • Safe-by-design and global risk assessment
  • Multicriteria optimization and integrated engineeringw

Published Papers (1 paper)

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Open AccessReview
Pinch Methods for Efficient Use of Water in Food Industry: A Survey Review
Sustainability 2019, 11(16), 4492; https://doi.org/10.3390/su11164492 - 19 Aug 2019
Cited by 1
The implementation of sustainable water management practices, through the recycling and reuse of water, is essential in terms of minimizing production costs and the environmental impact of the food industry. This problem goes beyond the classical audit and housekeeping practices through developing a [...] Read more.
The implementation of sustainable water management practices, through the recycling and reuse of water, is essential in terms of minimizing production costs and the environmental impact of the food industry. This problem goes beyond the classical audit and housekeeping practices through developing a systemic water-using reduction strategy. The implementation of such an approach needs R&D development, especially for the food industry, where there is a lack of knowledge on: (a) process integration and (b) data on the pollutant indicators or (c) volumes of water used and discharged at specific steps of the food processing line. Since energy pinch analysis emerged, different variations of pinch methods have been developed. As a variation of pinch, Water pinch analysis is a global and systematic approach to minimize water consumption and discharges, especially for the most energy-intensive and water-consuming factories. Based on the nature of the food industry, the real systems are complex, multi-source multi-contaminant systems, the problem should be well formulated, including mathematical constraints (inequalities thresholds). Current work has reviewed comprehensive literature about different variations of pinch analysis. In continue, water pinch method deeply discussed and some relevant data concerning the water using process and pollutant indicators have been reviewed with emphasis on the food industry sector. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Food Processing and Engineering)
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