Research Topic

Novel Tools to Improve Food Quality and Shelf Life: Advances and Future Perspectives

About this Research Topic

The bio-deterioration of food commodities during postharvest is a major cause of food loss around the globe. The postharvest transit period for food commodities such as vegetables, fruits, dairy and bakery products, arable cereals and pulses, meat, and seafood has experienced substantial losses. There are many factors that contribute for these losses including bacterial and fungal pathogens, insect pests and oxidation reactions. In order to have a safe and sustainable supply of foodstuffs, these pathogenic microbes along with insect pests and oxidation reactions must be controlled throughout the food supply chain in an economical way. In the recent past, several food-preservation strategies have been established to assure food safety, nutritional values, and sensory attributes of various foodstuffs. In addition, the negative impact of commercial food preservatives on health and the environment is leading to more research to evaluate which natural additives (namely natural antimicrobial, antioxidant and insecticidal agents) may fulfill the regulation of food safety.

The mitigation of outbreaks of diseases and insect pests, contamination of foodstuffs (e.g. mycotoxins, pesticides) in the supply chain as well as during post-harvest handling, is a serious task as these concerns pose major challenges to both food processors and growers. In addition, lack of cold storage facilities for food commodities, unavoidable physiological changes after the harvest, and microbial growth/insect multiplication also pose a serious threat to produce. The demand for natural antimicrobial and insecticidal agents is expected to increase progressively due to consumers’ concerns about the use of commercial antimicrobials and insecticides. In recent years, food scientists/microbiologists have attempted to avoid these losses through the exploitation of technologies like modified/controlled atmosphere, use of nano-formulations/nano-emulsions, rapid methods or kits for detection of food spoilage/pathogens, and other advanced methods such as omics interventions in food quality and food safety.

Recent progress in this interdisciplinary field such as agriculture, food science and technology, and postharvest pathology as well as microbiology, and food deterioration need to be compiled and along with relevant updates, should be brought forward in food regulatory policies that are already in place. This proposed topic will assemble recent interventions in research towards the protection of foodstuffs from bio-deterioration/spoilage, enhancing their quality and shelf life, and monitoring conditions during transit and storage.

Within this research subject, authors from the interdisciplinary fields of Food Science and Technology, Food Protection, Plant Pathology and Entomology are encouraged to submit Original Research, Mini-Review, and Review articles focusing on, but not limited to:

Suggested topics:
• Essential oils and Plant extracts as antimicrobials
• Essential oils and Plant extracts as insecticidals
• Microbial Bio-control Agents as antimicrobials and insecticidal agents
• Encapsulation of antimicrobials and insecticidal agents
• Antioxidant properties of phytochemicals and their application in food systems
• Food applications of active packaging
• Allelopathic effect of phytochemicals
• Physical methods of food preservations in modified/controlled atmosphere
• Use of nanoemulsions in food preservation
• Evaluation of toxicity of plant-based antimicrobials/insecticidals/antioxidants
• Omics interventions for the advancement of food quality and food safety


Keywords: Antimicrobial, Insecticidal, Antioxidant, Phytochemicals, Toxicity, Essential oils, Food Preservation, Active food packaging, Omics


Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.

The bio-deterioration of food commodities during postharvest is a major cause of food loss around the globe. The postharvest transit period for food commodities such as vegetables, fruits, dairy and bakery products, arable cereals and pulses, meat, and seafood has experienced substantial losses. There are many factors that contribute for these losses including bacterial and fungal pathogens, insect pests and oxidation reactions. In order to have a safe and sustainable supply of foodstuffs, these pathogenic microbes along with insect pests and oxidation reactions must be controlled throughout the food supply chain in an economical way. In the recent past, several food-preservation strategies have been established to assure food safety, nutritional values, and sensory attributes of various foodstuffs. In addition, the negative impact of commercial food preservatives on health and the environment is leading to more research to evaluate which natural additives (namely natural antimicrobial, antioxidant and insecticidal agents) may fulfill the regulation of food safety.

The mitigation of outbreaks of diseases and insect pests, contamination of foodstuffs (e.g. mycotoxins, pesticides) in the supply chain as well as during post-harvest handling, is a serious task as these concerns pose major challenges to both food processors and growers. In addition, lack of cold storage facilities for food commodities, unavoidable physiological changes after the harvest, and microbial growth/insect multiplication also pose a serious threat to produce. The demand for natural antimicrobial and insecticidal agents is expected to increase progressively due to consumers’ concerns about the use of commercial antimicrobials and insecticides. In recent years, food scientists/microbiologists have attempted to avoid these losses through the exploitation of technologies like modified/controlled atmosphere, use of nano-formulations/nano-emulsions, rapid methods or kits for detection of food spoilage/pathogens, and other advanced methods such as omics interventions in food quality and food safety.

Recent progress in this interdisciplinary field such as agriculture, food science and technology, and postharvest pathology as well as microbiology, and food deterioration need to be compiled and along with relevant updates, should be brought forward in food regulatory policies that are already in place. This proposed topic will assemble recent interventions in research towards the protection of foodstuffs from bio-deterioration/spoilage, enhancing their quality and shelf life, and monitoring conditions during transit and storage.

Within this research subject, authors from the interdisciplinary fields of Food Science and Technology, Food Protection, Plant Pathology and Entomology are encouraged to submit Original Research, Mini-Review, and Review articles focusing on, but not limited to:

Suggested topics:
• Essential oils and Plant extracts as antimicrobials
• Essential oils and Plant extracts as insecticidals
• Microbial Bio-control Agents as antimicrobials and insecticidal agents
• Encapsulation of antimicrobials and insecticidal agents
• Antioxidant properties of phytochemicals and their application in food systems
• Food applications of active packaging
• Allelopathic effect of phytochemicals
• Physical methods of food preservations in modified/controlled atmosphere
• Use of nanoemulsions in food preservation
• Evaluation of toxicity of plant-based antimicrobials/insecticidals/antioxidants
• Omics interventions for the advancement of food quality and food safety


Keywords: Antimicrobial, Insecticidal, Antioxidant, Phytochemicals, Toxicity, Essential oils, Food Preservation, Active food packaging, Omics


Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.

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Submission Deadlines

25 January 2021 Abstract
03 May 2021 Manuscript

Participating Journals

Manuscripts can be submitted to this Research Topic via the following journals:

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Topic Editors

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Submission Deadlines

25 January 2021 Abstract
03 May 2021 Manuscript

Participating Journals

Manuscripts can be submitted to this Research Topic via the following journals:

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