Books

Books on Computer Simulation

EUROSIS publishes conference proceedings for third parties, books on computer simulation or on computer simulation related topics on demand. These are either textbooks or PhD Theses. EUROSIS retains the copyright, unless otherwise agreed upon. Quotes are on demand.

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Textbook on Quantitative Tools for Sustainable Food and Energy in the food chain

The agro-food sector is one of the largest manufacturing sectors in Europe. It also has a direct impact on human and environmental health and vitality. The latter has become increasingly important in a time when food related diseases have reached epidemic levels. Additionally, food consumption is fundamental to the health and vitality of the citizens of Europe and food production is vital to the competiveness of the European food industry- the sector providing the highest level of employment in Europe. In addition, it is estimated that the food chain is responsible for significant CO2 emissions and food waste, causing significant environmental impacts. Predictive tools and quantitative (microbial, chemical) risk assessment plays a crucial part in food quality and safety around the globe, providing simulation tools which are used by the food industry, policy makers and managers to formulate and implement risk management policies and controls with the view to protecting human health. Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) and related tools (such as carbon or water footprints) have emerged as simulation tools which have proven to be an essential element of the evaluation of the environmental sustainability and performance of food value chains. With the increased need for such tools comes the need for skilled individuals to develop and implement quantitative tools for safe, sustainable food and energy in the food chain.

This book provides an introduction to quantitative tools for sustainable food and energy in the food chain with a focus on predictive microbiology, risk assessment and LCA applications. This book is the result of a 3 years collaborative EU ERASMUS+ strategic partnership on cooperation for innovation and the exchange of good teaching practices. This programme was developed among 7 Institutes (the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki (Greece), the University College Dublin (Ireland), the University of Birmingham (UK), the University of Santiago de Compostella (Spain), Oniris (France), the Katholieke Universiteit Leuven (Belgium) and the University of Malta (Malta)) and one industrial partner (FEIRACO, Spain), with a desire to develop collaboration and innovative problem based learning initiatives. The multi-lateral trans-European cooperation, fosters both institutional collaboration and innovative problem based learning initiatives. The book is a product of this collaboration and provides instruction for early stage researchers in the areas of Food Science, Biosystems and Food Engineering, Chemical Engineering, Biology, Biomathematics, Biostatistics and any other relevant areas.

Structure

The book is presented in 3 sections. Section I deals with Quantitative Microbiology by providing an introduction to this scientific area followed by the theory, applications and exercises in multiscale modelling and simulation. This is showcased through macroscopic, mesoscopic and microscopic modelling. The section is concluded by presenting the principles of the design of experiments and optimal experimental design for model calibration.

Section II deals with Risk Assessment. Following a detailed description of its principles two subsections are presented focusing on food safety and quantitative microbial risk assessment during food processing and predicting the microbial behaviour during distribution and storage of foods in exposure assessment. Both sections are described in detail with a number of examples and exercises for the better comprehension by the readers.

The book ends with section III, which focuses on Life Cycle Assessment. Firstly the topic of food processing and energy demand assessment are presented followed by the steps required to conduct Life Cycle Assessment studies and providing examples of its implications for sustainability.

The theoretical sections of the book will cover all the fundamentals and basic principles of Predictive Microbiology, Risk Assessment and Life Cycle Assessment while examples and exercises are developed to solve realistic multifaceted problems with the use of computer programming software. These problems include the construction of experimental designs, risk model development, regression analysis, sensitivity analysis, safety risk scenarios and energy analysis. Computer-based software packages (Excel, R, @RISK, SimaPro, open-LCA, Matlab demos) are used to perform case study analysis within the principles of problem based learning.

For students the book can serve as a useful reference, providing a fundamental grasp of both theory and practical applications of quantitative tools, leading to a better comprehension of product quality, safety, resources intensity and environmental impacts in the food industry. The book will lead students to an appreciable understanding of the substantial body of applied modelling, statistics and its recent developments in the field of Food Science, Quantitative Risk Assessment and Life Cycle Analysis. Students will get a grasp of the principle concepts in the theory and practice of empirical and theoretical modelling and learn about existing available software packages and modelling practices. The practical examples and exercises will contribute to developing students’ skills on defining problem objectives in realistic and dynamic food environments and to critically assess the application of mathematical knowledge in particular contexts.

For teachers the book can aid class plans and provide pre-solved examples and exercises with practical applications helping to add the assimilated new techniques in their own educational programmes. It will also help to develop new ideas in planning case studies and the development of theoretical and practical learning programmes.

For industry and regulatory readers the book will give some insight on developing and applying Risk Assessment and Life Cycle Assessment schemes which can be used for decision making and for better safety and operation management.

Conclusion

The textbook on Quantitative Tools for Sustainable Food and Energy in the food chain (Q-Safe) can play an important role in food safety, risk assessment and process engineering. The text provides a comprehensive guide for students and teachers, providing insight into developing quantitative tools in food microbiology, processing and exposure assessment. The book will appeal to those with an interest in mathematical modelling approaches in the Food and Bioscience field.

The editors,
Vasilis P. Valdramidis, Enda J. Cummins, Jan F.M. Van Impe