Wednesday, 4 October 2017: 14:30
National Harbor 10 (Gaylord National Resort and Convention Center)
Researchers at the Beltsville Agricultural Research Center have developed spectral-image-based sensing systems and techniques to reduce food safety risks in post-harvest production and processing. The research objectives focus primarily on comprehensive safety and quality inspection for online bulk processing of fresh fruits and leafy greens, authentication of food ingredients and detection of food contaminants, and improvement of cleaning and sanitation efficacies in food processing facilities. For improved online produce screening, imaging methods and prototype instrumentation have been developed to allow for inspection of whole surfaces of round fruits and relatively flat leafy greens. The prototype produce inspection systems incorporate multi-view and multitask imaging methods for simultaneous reflectance and fluorescence imaging, thus allowing for screening of nearly 100% of the surface areas for fecal contaminants and defects during processing. To detect adulterants, a high throughput line-scan Raman imaging system was developed to rapidly scan large surface areas of food ingredients (e.g., milk powder) for adulterants. In addition, a fluorescence-based handheld imaging technology for contamination detection has been optimized for various commercial applications, such as contamination and sanitation inspection in meat and produce processing facilities. Collectively, these instrumentation and spectral-image-based sensing systems will facilitate rapid, non-destructive detection of contaminants or adulterants in food. The current states of the above spectral imaging and instrumentation technologies are presented.