Nutrition-centered decision making to increase vegetable consumption and reduce food waste in the supply chain (WASTENULE)

Uncontrolled industrial and domestic post-harvest processing can damage food quality and organoleptic characteristics, finally increasing the generation of food waste. Fresh vegetables and salad are the largest contributors to avoidable household food waste in the UK. A new interdisciplinary consortium of 2 Universities (Leeds and Newcastle) and a Food Company (William Jackson Food Group, WJFG) will be created to identify ideal delivery and storage conditions to maintain nutritional and sensory properties of carrot, broccoli and leeks. WJFG will deliver produce to Leeds over a six month period where it will be subjected to a range of conditions that simulate current practice during the year. Produce will be assessed for physical and sensory properties using human volunteers to provide a measure of how consumers perceive ‘freshness’. The aim is to provide best practice guidance on delivery and storage for optimal nutritional quality and how this correlates to ‘freshness’. The results obtained will be used as preliminary studies for proposals addressing sustainable food production, improved nutrition and consumer behavior.

PIs:
Caroline Orfila, Leeds (Email: c.orfila@leeds.ac.uk)
Kirsten Brandt, Newcastle (Email: kirsten.brandt@newcastle.ac.uk)