The key objectives of this project are :
- to establish safe pre-competitive commercial applications of high oxygen MAP
for extending the quality shelf-life of a wide selection of prepared produce items;
- to investigate the underlying microbial and biochemical spoilage mechanisms
which are inhibited under high oxygen MAP;
- to provide a comprehensive guidelines document which will outline good
manufacturing and handling practices for high oxygen MAP as well as
non-sulphite dipping of fresh prepared produce.
In addition, this research will entail extensive investigations of the effects of high oxygen and argon MAP on the redox status, respiration rates, microbial growth, nutritional components (vitamins C and E, carotenoids, polyphenolics, quinols, and polyunsaturated fatty acids), energy metabolism, oxidative stress and oxygen driven product enzymes (polyphenol oxidase, lipoxygenase and peroxidase) of fresh prepared produce.
High oxygen and argon MAP are radically new approaches to produce MAP. For example, high oxygen and argon MAP have very recently been found to significantly inhibit enzymic browning, anaerobic fermentation reactions, respiration rates, and aerobic and anaerobic microbial growth. Using such novel MAP approaches circumvent the many inherent disadvantages of current state-of-the-art produce MAP. Further details of these novel MAP technologies are outlined in Part A of this proposal.
High oxygen and argon MAP have great potential to improve the competitive position of the European produce and prepared produce industries since the extra quality shelf-life achieved will enhance export potential with considerably less wastage, at a more economic cost. The involvement of SMEs has already been assured and these new MAP approaches can improve the added-value potential of fresh fruit and vegetables.
Underpinning research is essential on a multidisciplinary European level to fully understand high oxygen an argon MAP. These new approaches have already been shown to be highly effective and the success of these new technologies will help encourage greater consumption of fresh prepared produce which will improve the health and well-being of European consumers.
Funding SchemeCSC - Cost-sharing contracts
6700 AA Wageningen
402 29 Göteborg