Processed fruits and vegetables are very widely consumed and contribute significantly to people's total fruit and vegetable intake. These products have definite nutritional benefits. Processed fruit and vegetable businesses must offer products that are attractive for consumers while managing multiple constraints related to competitiveness and sustainability: process optimisation, waste reduction, and the need for innovation.
The aim of Actia's Qualiveg Joint Technological Unit is to improve the nutritional and organoleptic properties of processed fruit and vegetables and promote innovations in the industry without compromising food safety. It relies on multi-disciplinary approaches around science and food technologies and integrates the entire industry, from primary production to consumption.
The Joint Technological Unit's five-year programme started in January 2018. It is located in Avignon, at the heart of an eco-system of research, development, and training institutions devoted to plant-based industries. It is in line with the work of the previous Joint Technological Unit.
Making sure fruit and vegetables are safe to eat and preserve their microbiological quality, with a particular focus on ecology and on the behaviour of thermo-resistant micro-organisms (e.g. bacterial spores).
The improvement of processed fruit and vegetables' nutritional properties, particularly through better management of the heterogeneity of raw materials.
The transfer of new knowledge to the fruit and vegetable processing industry.