Dealing with the health aspects of fruit and vegetables is a complex task. Epidemiological studies relating intake of fruit and vegetables with health are positive but not always consistent in their results. Fruit and vegetables contain a huge number of components that can contribute to their potential health benefits.
The level and bioavailability of these components is strongly affected by processes in the supply chain.
To use the various sources information for design of healthier processes and products various challenges remain to be solved, like:
- How to deal with uncertainty and variability in the results of epidemiological studies?
- How to estimate the health impact of individual components?
- How to optimize processes and preparation methods for health?
In this presentation the use of mathematical modeling for these issues will be shown by various examples. Different modeling approaches are needed for specific areas:
- Mechanistic Kinetic Models for process simulation,
- Monte Carlo Simulations for modeling epidemiological results,
- Bayesian Belief Networks for linking consumer aspects to product and processing variables.
By these examples it will be shown that modeling can be used to use experimental data more efficiently and to improve the decision making process by combining expert knowledge and data.