Technical and economic aspects of Alternaria spp. mycotoxin management in tomatoes in China

Project: PhD

Project Details


Tomatoes are the most important vegetable crops globally, with increased production in the past decades. Mycotoxin contamination in tomatoes, caused by Alternaria spp., can lead to food safety crises, human and animal health problems, as well as yield losses. Farmers beat the economic burden due to lower crop yields and lower prices of the contaminated crops. The infection of tomatoes with Alternaria spp. occurs in the whole supply chain from the cultivation stage to transportation and storage. Besides, it is difficult to remove Alternaria spp. Toxins during the processing procedures since they are chemically stable compounds. Therefore, the control of mycotoxin production is key to ensure the quality of yields of tomatoes. Modeling the effects of influencing factors on mycotoxin contamination can be helpful in this respect. This project aims to develop a predictive model for estimating Alternaria spp. Infection and mycotoxin generation on tomatoes during the cultivation season to provide timely information for stakeholders for reducing unexpected risks. Research questions that will be addressed are: 1) What is the current state of the art related to the incidence and toxicity of Alternaria mycotoxins as well as the prevention strategies? 2) What is the optimal way to obtain enough data to support predictive model establishment? 3) How to systematically combine the biotic and abiotic factors related to modelling? 4) How to evaluate the performance of this predictive model in avoiding risks in the real food supply chain?
Effective start/end date1/01/22 → …


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