Innovative and eco-sustainable processing and packaging for safe and high quality organic products with enhanced nutritional quality. Final report

| Type artikkel: Rapport
The main goal of the project has been to develop innovative sustainable processing and packaging technologies to meet the growing consumer demand and boost the manufacturing of safe organic berry products with high nutritional quality and low environmental impact. The aim has been to evaluate technologies to naturally extend the shelf-life of fresh organic berries and to process berries into a wide variety of value added products. Several solutions and technologies for extending shelf life and the overall quality of fresh and processed berry and fruit products have been identified and developed during the three years of the project.
The major results and achievements are described below.


Marie Alminger




CORE Organic Plus

• A virtual Modified Atmosphere Packaging software system (MAP),  has been upgraded  and optimised to identify optimal O2and CO2 concentrations in headspace and spoilage as a function of time. This has enabled measurements of respiration characteristics of any kind of fresh berries and determination of the shelf-life in given conditions, which will be a real added value for the stakeholders
• Pulsed electric field (PEF) and ultrasound (US) coupled with osmotic dehydration (OD) has been applied to improve functionality of semi-dried products. The mild technologies enabled preservation of the microstructures and the fresh-like characteristics of berries and fruits.
• The use of edible coatings in improving the shelf-life of blueberries was investigated and found to improve firmness, colour and reduce the growth kinetics of yeast and mesophilic aerobic bacteria.
• Microwave assisted extraction (MAE) of phenolic compounds in berries was optimised using response surface methodology. The results showed that 86% of the phenolics of blueberry and 88.7% of phenolics of strawberries could be extracted in short time.
• Drying and fractionation techniques were found to be useful for production of bilberry powders with preserved qualities and potential application as functional ingredients in e.g. dairy products
• The microbiological safety (especially mycotoxins) of pre-treated and processed berry
and fruit products was evaluated and found to be good for all products
• Within the project, innovative berry ingredients and products have been produced, such as functional powders, healthy extruded snacks and 3D printed confectionaries.
• High-pressure homogenisation (HPH) was applied to organic juices of blueberries and kiwi fruit and demonstrated to increase shelf-life considerably (for blueberry juice 2 months at both cold and ambient storage and for kiwi fruit juice >  40 days at cold storage).
• A literature study has been made to identify important quality parameters limiting shelf life during storage of berries and a report on technical specifications has been delivered.
• Storage tests of fresh berries have been performed to analyse quality parameters at different temperature and humidity conditions and for validation of the mathematical model implemented in WP2. The recommendation is to store berries cold and in closed packages.
• Consumer behaviour studies have been made to identify factors that influence berry consumptionin cross-national surveys. Consumers show high interest in products that are free from additives, with high nutritional content and organic. Consumer acceptance and con-joint studies have been conducted for dried organic strawberries. The conjoint studies were useful to obtain information of important aspects of design
of new food products and packaging.


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