News (in Barrett Lab and the fruit & vegetable world)
Recent research out of the Barrett Research Group on ‘advanced technologies’ such as high pressure and pulsed electric field processing, as compared to traditional thermal processing, as they affect the integrity of plant tissues were published in the latest issue of the Journal of Food Science. Five of the manuscripts originate from the doctoral research of Dr. Maria Gonzalez, currently an Assistant Professor at the Universidad de Concepcion in Chile. Dr. Gonzalez used light microscopy and digital imaging, NMR, texture, electrolyte leakage and enzyme analysis to determine at what point these processing technologies resulted in a loss of integrity and subsequent deterioration of texture, color, flavor and nutrient content in a model plant tissues. Two other scientists in the Barrett Lab, Dr. Suvaluk Asavasanti and Dr. Seda Ersus, applied pulsed electric field technology to the same model system and determined the point in the process where integrity was lost, using the same methods developed by Dr. Gonzalez. This research will allow us to quantify loss of tissue and cellular integrity following harvest of a fruit or vegetable, and to optimize postharvest handling and processing to retain integrity and therefore quality.
State-Specific Trends in Fruit and Vegetable Consumption Among Adults
United States, 2000-2009 (from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention MMWR Weekly, Sept. 10, 2010.
Fresh fruits and vegetables comprised two of the top three grocery items (from The Packer, 8/24/10) for Baby Boomers in 2010 after failing to crack the top five 30 years ago, reflecting trends toward healthier, lower-fat foods, according to a Whole Foods Market Inc. Survey.
Scientists Try to Improve Flavor of Produce (from Central Valley Business News, Aug. 16, 2010) USDA Specialty Crop Research Initiative Grant members (including Barrett Lab) receive focus on their work to improve fruit and vegetable flavor. CNN Video Link, August 18, 2010. More information on the USDA SCRI Grant
Drs. Diane M. Barrett, Christine Bruhn, and Linda Harris, all Cooperative Extension Specialists in the Dept. of Food Science & Technology, are active members of the project teams addressing improvement of fresh fruit flavor. Dr. Barrett is leading the group focused on developing rapid analytical methods for flavor analysis. This multi-disciplinary team, comprised of experts at both UC Davis and University of Florida, are correlating instrumental measurements taken with GC-MS and GC-Olfactory to sensory descriptive panels, and rapid flavor-measuring instruments such as the Z-Nose.
Dr. Bruhn is working with consumers to record their satisfaction with fresh fruit in the market and to hear in their own words the qualities of a perfect peach, pear, berry, tomato, and melon. This information will help guide other members of the team as they investigate ways to improve fruit quality.
UC Davis Top in Number of Papers Published
Thomson Reuters Science Watch (June 6, 2010) has named UC Davis most prolific in food science and technology publications for the last five years. The 593 papers published by members of the department between 2005 and 2009 catapulted Davis to the number one spot, placing over Cornell’s 530 and University of Wisconsin, Madison’s 487. Thomson Reuters, an information processing conglomerate, has indexed a total of 71,732 papers in the field over the five-year span.
Suvaluk Asavasanti wins the Graduate Student Nonthermal Poster Competition at IFT 2010! Congrats, Su!
Dr. Barrett with Suvaluk and Dr. Jim Seiber, Department Chair, UC Davis Food Science and Technology, at IFT 2010
Click on the thumbnails below to see additional pictures of IFT 2010!
Barrett Lab and other UC Davis FST Members at IFT 2010