Development of an integrated methodology for complete and documented traceability and quality control of processed foods and its role in risk assessment for Public Health

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Δημητρακοπούλου, Μαρία-Ελένη
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According to consumers’ requirements regarding food quality, food safety and food authentication considered to be crucial. The present study is divided in two parts: Part A. estimation of microbiological quality of Greek products and Part B. determination of their geographical origin. In present thesis molecular methods for microbiological quality and traceability of Greek PDO products were investigated. More specific, advanced omics technologies, which have led to development of “Food omics”, a discipline which study all aspects related to food and nutrition, were developed and performed. Part A: Food Safety A major and important area of challenges regarding food safety, is microbiological safety of foodstuff. Thus, nowadays, due to the increasing interest of consumers, food quality systems tend to be more and more demanding, following new regulations and techniques. At first, a systematic review was conducted regarding possible risk factors for risk assessments, in correlation to foodborne pathogens, food type and production phase. This work provides an overview of current publications regarding microbiological risk factors and technology used for pathogens detection, with an insight on gaps identified. Then, identification and characterization of bacterial diversity of five complex and different food types in terms of food quality and safety aspect was executed. Standard culture-dependent methods for bacteria analysis of each food matrix and molecular technique, Next Generation Sequencing were performed. Finally, analysis of potential potential biological hazards and contamination points for risk assessment applied to production stages of two Greek PDO food products. Part B: Food Traceability Several independent agencies and quality authorities are looking for reliable tools for validating food products’ geographical origin and authenticity. Due to this demand and the impact befallen on public opinion when a food fraud incident appears, researchers try to address this issue with innovative and analytical approaches. Food products which hold a PDO or PGI quality scheme because of their uniqueness and economic impact become prone to adulteration. At first, a systematic review was conducted to analyze the correlation between food traceability and authentication and to record the lab-based methods used for food authentication or/and traceability. Afterwards, DNA-based approaches for studying bacteria microflora of food products and genomic DNA were performed and evaluated. In parallel, metabolomics techniques were selected to investigate potential markers for determination of food provenance. The proposing techniques are very promising either for estimating the microbiological quality or for determination of geographical origin of a food product.
Ιχνηλασιμότητα, Ασφάλεια τροφίμων, Αυθεντικότητα, Εκτίμηση επικινδυνότητας, Δημόσια Υγεία