Postharvest quality

Postharvest quality

The world's population is growing, cities are increasing in size and, as a result of climate change, production areas are disappearing in one place, while new ones emerge elsewhere. Guaranteeing food security requires an understanding of quality in the chain. Wageningen Food & Biobased Research develops the knowledge, insights and technological applications that make this possible.

Exploiting biological variation

One pear is juicy, another has a firm bite. Making the most of the natural biological variation in fresh produce, is the philosophy behind this research programme. After all, why strive for uniformity when there are so many consumers in the world, each with their own wishes and preferences? It is precisely these differences that lend themselves to strategic decisions about where and when products are sold on the market. Think of a batch of ready-to-eat avocados destined for the busy supermarket around the corner, while long-life avocados are heading for a quiet supermarket further away. Such an approach delivers satisfied customers and reduces both energy consumption and food losses in the chain.

Predicting quality

From online 'personalised' fruit packages to advanced cooling equipment: there are plenty of opportunities for innovation throughout the fresh food chain. Maintaining the quality of products after harvesting is crucial for success. Wageningen Food & Biobased Research offers support with knowledge, technologies and practical, scientifically substantiated, tailor-made advice.

We have unique, in-house knowledge and expertise in the field of measuring quality after harvesting, and in storage and transport. We advise suppliers and retailers about questions concerning quality-driven logistics. We support governments, investors, sectors, societal organisations and trade associations in food systems design and setting up and structuring sustainable food chains and systems. And we help them to collect, analyse and interpret data).