SHEALTHY- Non-Thermal physical technologies to preserve fresh and minimally processed fruit and vegetables


Implementation period: 01/05/2019 - 30/04/2023

GA number: 817936

Type of Project: Horizon 2020

Internet presentation:

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Project aim: SHEALTHY proposal aims to assess and develop an optimal combination of non-thermal sanitization, preservation and stabilization methods to improve the safety (inactivation of pathogens and spoilage microorganisms), while preserving the nutritional quality (up to 30%) and prolonging the shelf-life (up to 50%) of minimally processed F&V products.


About the project: By combining and modulating non-thermal technologies with minimally processing operation, we will respond to consumers’ demand for fresh, healthy, convenient, sustainable, and locally produced and additive-free food. The combined and optimized mild technologies will be demonstrated and validated in 2 business cases: Minimally processed fruits and vegetables and Fruit and vegetable-based juices & smoothies. Sanitization during washing will be optimized by applying in combination ultrasound (US), electrolyzed water, plasma activated water, High Intensity Pulsed Light and Blue Light. Bioactive coating, active and intelligent packaging will be applied for quality preservation and shelf-life extension of minimally processed F&V. F&V-based juices & smoothies will be stabilized by US and high-pressure processing. For F&V by-product valorization, US, pulsed electric field and membrane filtration will be used to extract bioactive compounds. Sustainable and flexible processing methods will be transferred and adapted to the need of local F&V micro and SMEs, interconnecting primary producers through novel cooperative business models and new logistics systems, to enhance the traceability and authenticity of raw materials along the F&V value chain. Commercial feasibility will be assessed, including consumer acceptance and regulatory, safety and environmental aspects. SHEALTHY will combine the technology trends and consumer needs to afford the business models, technology transfer and market orientation that will facilitate the transition towards a new collaborative agri-food ecosystem for traditional, local, and rural SMEs around EU.

This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation program under grant agreement No. 817936.




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