Benedetti et al - Novelties in the application of non destructive micro and macro sensors for the grading, sorting and storing of fruits and vegetables

Simona Benedetti1, Susanna Buratti1, Saverio Mannino1, Riccardo Massantini2, Fabio Mencarelli2* e Massimiliano Valentini3
1 Dipartimento di Scienze e Tecnologie Alimentari, Sez. Chimica, Università di Milano, Via Celoria 2, 20133 Milano
2 Dipartimento di Scienze e Tecnologie Agroalimentari, Laboratorio Postraccolta, Università della Tuscia, via S. Camillo dè Lellis, 01100 Viterbo
3 CRA Centro di Ricerca per il Sistema Pianta-Suolo, Via della Navicella 2-4, 00184 Roma

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Key words: NIR, electronic nose, MRI, acoustic sensors, mirosensors, horticultural crops.

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Abstract

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The most recent innovations have been reported regarding fruits and vegetables grading and sorting through non destructive analytical sensors. Specifically NIR Spectroscopy, Magnetic Resonance Imaging, Electronic Nose, Firmness Acoustic Sensors, and some indications on Microsensors has been covered. For each of these investigation systems, the instrument itself, and the operational principle has been briefly described. The paper deal also with the most update applications in postharvest, referred to each single system. Therefore, with NIR Spettroscopy it is possible to determine the soluble solids content, dry matter, firmness, hardness, and in some cases internal injuries.. Electronic Nose can be useful to determine the maturation index, sensory features, and chilling injury. Using Magnetic Resonance Imaging it is possible to detect structural changes and the development of diseases and disorders. Acoustic sensors give information regarding firmness, working with two principles: low mass impact or vibration frequency. Last but not least, microsensors are positively employed to monitor temperature, relative humidity, and some volatiles of interest for food quality and safety.

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