Our work will generate data related to rootstock evaluations, plant propagation, and production economics.
Determine thermal responses of selected food pathogens or their validated surrogates in selected foods for microwave heating regimes that maintain food safety and quality. Determine kinetics of food quality changes for short time microwave heating regimes.
Improve dielectric thermal processes to control Clostridium botulinum spores in non-homogeneous foods and in ready-to-eat meals in multi-compartment trays. Develop systems, processes, and validation protocols for the control of vegetative bacterial foodborne pathogens and human noroviruses in prepackaged foods and ready-to-eat meals.
Conduct accelerated storage and sensory studies comparing the quality of food prepared by microwave and conventional methods of similar lethality.
Develop scale-up strategies for sterilization and pasteurization applications and support industrial implementation of these technologies to produce safe and high-quality ready-to-eat, shelf-stable, refrigerated, and frozen meals.
Develop statistical tools to assess the safety of microwave processes in support of regulatory measures to protect public health. Transfer technology to public and private stakeholders and disseminate knowledge in short courses and workshops. Determine the thermal response to selected food pathogens based upon log-linear response parameters of selected organisms in buffer, deli meat, frozen mussels, ground meat, pasta, and frozen chopped spinach.
Determine food quality changes occurring during microwave heating regimes assessing the appearance, texture, and color changes for shelf-stable and pasteurized foods, comparing quality with conventionally thermally processed foods receiving a heat treatment of similar microbial lethality.
Develop new processes and filing protocols for various categories of food and foods in different types of packaging to significantly reduce the cost for food companies and reduce redundancy in applications for FDA approval.
The research will produce information for different, broad, non-homogeneous categories of packaged food. This work will include studies on the performance of non-foil films under microwave sterilization conditions. Develop a small pilot-scale microwave sterilization and pasteurization system that will have the flexibility to conduct process development and validation protocol studies for prepackaged foods that will be suitable for various packaging types and configurations and operational at a wide range of temperatures.
Conduct accelerated storage studies for microwave treated foods culminating with sensory studies using expert panels. Develop scale-up strategies for sterilization and pasteurization applications by adapting the pilot-scale system developed in 4 above and provide advice to industry on the use of microwave heating systems for the production of ready-to-eat meals including shelf stable items.
Use validated computer based models developed from the pilot scale unit to project capital cost estimation and energy requirements for microwave treatment systems of different size.
Develop statistical models, initially based upon Monte Carlo simulation methods, to assess the safety of microwave processes in support of regulatory measures to protect public health.
Models will be used to analyze the fate and survivability of food-borne pathogens in microwave processed foods. The target audience includes the research community, food industry, regulatory agencies, students, and general public.
Nothing Reported What opportunities for training and professional development has the project provided?
The project graduated a total of 18 students 12 Ph. Additionally, the project trained 6 postdoctoral fellows, 14 visiting scholars, and 7 staff engineers, lab managers, and technicities. WSU hosted over 15 food and packaging companies US and International to develop new food products for microwave sterilization and pasteurization using WSU pilot-scale systems.
How have the results been disseminated to communities of interest? In addition, WSU organized four one-week boot camps at WSU and provided lectures and hands-on training for representatives from over 30 companies and 4 universities.
The WSU team also supported over 15 food processing, packaging, and equipment companies in product testing and regulatory filing activities. Our subcontractor, International Microwave Power Institute, offered two short courses 2 days each every year of the grant, with WSU providing two short courses as well.
Together we taught over industrial personnel about basics of microwave heating and products development. What do you plan to do during the next reporting period to accomplish the goals? Nothing Reported Impacts What was accomplished under these goals?
Major activities completed; Thermal inactivation studies on Listeria monocytogenes, Salmonella enterica, E. Thermal kinetics of quality changes including color, protein denaturation, textural properties in selected foods were completed along with food quality parameters for pasta and muscle foods including beef, pork, chicken, shellfish, and finfish as affected by thermal treatments and during storage.
Further, a number of studies were conducted on the formation of AGEs both free and bound forms in a systematic manner. The group also created advanced tools for evaluating the shelf-life, chemical and microbial safety of microwave processed foods.
The system was continuously improved and upgraded to closely mimic an industrial operation. Specific objectives met; All objectives outlined in the project proposal were met as proposed. Significant results achieved, including major findings, developments, or conclusions both positive and negative ; The results from thermal inactivation studies which will enable precise thermal processes to be developed for microwave pasteurization to ensure production of safe products.
Thermal inactivation studies on hepatitis A virus in mussels done at UT under the USDA NIFA project were utilized by The European Food Safety Authority to develop the recommendations outlined in the report "Evaluation of heat treatments, different from those currently established in the EU legislation, that could be applied to live bivalve molluscs from B and C production areas, that have not been submitted to purification or relaying, in order to eliminate pathogenic microorganisms" EFSA Journal.
Food quality research showed the importance for determining how the reaction products form during pasteurization and sterilization in different foods and whether the quantity of these formed during dielectric heating is less than from conductive or convective heating processes of similar lethality.
Additionally, it was shown that microwave-based heating has the ability to deliver safe and high quality ready-to-eat meals over the expected shelf-life Packaging research highlighted that the migration of plastic additives depends on temperature and time of processing not on the mechanism of heating, hence microwave processes do not pose additional food safety risks from the use of plastic packaging.The quantitative research design that you set in your dissertation should reflect the type of research questions/hypotheses that you have set.
When we talk about quantitative research designs, we are typically referring to research following either a descriptive, experimental, quasi-experimental and relationship-based research design, which we will return to shortly.
Senior Scholars as statisticians, methodologists, and theorists facilitate workshops intended to help doctoral students conceptualize and design components of their dissertations (i.e, formulating research questions or hypotheses, developing literature review, selecting instrumentation, designing methodology, and completing data analysis).
What is the significance of teacher education's fluctuating fortunes and shifting institutional forms? What is the field's capacity for research on teacher education? By comparison with research on teaching and learning, research on the education of teachers has been under-developed both conceptually and methodologically.
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