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Hyperspectral imaging system for the non destructive assessment of mushroom qual

Hyperspectral imaging system for the non destructive assessment of mushroom quality and shelf-life prediction

Hyperspectral imaging is a novel technique that combines conventional imaging and spectroscopy to acquire both spatial and spectral information from an object. This information forms a three-dimension “hypercube” which can be analyzed to ascertain minor and/or subtle physical and chemical features in an object. Thus, a hyperspectral image can be used to detect physical and geometric characteristics such as colour, size, shape, and texture. It can also be used to extract intrinsic chemical and molecular information (such as water, fat, protein, and other hydrogen-bonded constituent) from a product.

This project aims to evaluate the potential of hyperspectral imaging techniques for mushroom quality and shelf-life assessment in a two stranded approach. In the first, undamaged and physically-damaged mushrooms will be studied with the goal of developing a method to identify damage before it becomes visible to the naked eye. A second strand of the project will involve a fundamental study of the metabolomics of whole injured mushrooms during storage. Metabolic profiling techniques will be developed to monitor principal metabolites and chemometric tools will be used to relate metabolic changes to hyperspectral imaging information. These two strands will provide the mushroom industry with two tools that will serve to (a) monitor batches of mushrooms in a real-time retail situation and ( b) develop metabolic knowledge to benchmark new improvements in the product/process.

Contact: gerard.downey@teagasc.ie