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2024 - Near Infrared and UV-Visible Spectroscopy Coupled with Chemometrics for the Characterization of Flours from Different Starch Origins [Articolo su rivista]
Pellacani, Samuele; Borsari, Marco; Cocchi, Marina; D'Alessandro, Alessandro; Durante, Caterina; Farioli, Giulia; Strani, Lorenzo

2023 - A Feasibility Study towards the On-Line Quality Assessment of Pesto Sauce Production by NIR and Chemometrics [Articolo su rivista]
Tanzilli, Daniele; D'Alessandro, Alessandro; Tamelli, Samuele; Durante, Caterina; Cocchi, Marina; Strani, Lorenzo

The food industry needs tools to improve the efficiency of their production processes by minimizing waste, detecting timely potential process issues, as well as reducing the efforts and workforce devoted to laboratory analysis while, at the same time, maintaining high-quality standards of products. This can be achieved by developing on-line monitoring systems and models. The present work presents a feasibility study toward establishing the on-line monitoring of a pesto sauce production process by means of NIR spectroscopy and chemometric tools. The spectra of an intermediate product were acquired on-line and continuously by a NIR probe installed directly on the process line. Principal Component Analysis (PCA) was used both to perform an exploratory data analysis and to build Multivariate Statistical Process Control (MSPC) charts. Moreover, Partial Least Squares (PLS) regression was employed to compute real time prediction models for two different pesto quality parameters, namely, consistency and total lipids content. PCA highlighted some differences related to the origin of basil plants, the main pesto ingredient, such as plant age and supplier. MSPC charts were able to detect production stops/restarts. Finally, it was possible to obtain a rough estimation of the quality of some properties in the early production stage through PLS.

2022 - Fast GC E-Nose and Chemometrics for the Rapid Assessment of Basil Aroma [Articolo su rivista]
Strani, Lorenzo; D'Alessandro, Alessandro; Ballestrieri, Daniele; Durante, Caterina; Cocchi, Marina

The aim of this work is to assess the potentialities of the synergistic combination of an ultra-fast chromatography-based electronic nose as a fingerprinting technique and multivariate data analysis in the context of food quality control and to investigate the influence of some factors, i.e., basil variety, cut, and year of crop, in the final aroma of the samples. A low = level data fusion approach coupled with Principal Component Analysis (PCA) and ANOVA—Simultaneous Component Analysis (ASCA) was used in order to analyze the chromatographic signals acquired with two different columns (MXT-5 and MXT-1701). While the PCA analysis results highlighted the peculiarity of some basil varieties, differing either by a higher concentration of some of the detected chemical compounds or by the presence of different compounds, the ASCA analysis pointed out that variety and year are the most relevant effects, and also confirmed the results of previous investigations.

2021 - Characterization of Basil Volatile Fraction and Study of its Agronomic Variation by ASCA [Articolo su rivista]
D'Alessandro, Alessandro; Ballestrieri, Daniele; Strani, Lorenzo; Cocchi, Marina; Durante, Caterina

Basil is a plant known worldwide for its culinary and health attributes. It counts more than a hundred and fifty species and many more chemo-types due to its easy cross-breeds. Each species and each chemo-type have a typical aroma pattern and selecting the proper one is crucial for the food industry. Twelve basil varieties have been studied over three years (2018–2020), as have four different cuts. To characterize the aroma profile, nine typical basil flavour molecules have been selected using a gas chromatography–mass spectrometry coupled with an olfactometer (GC–MS/O). The concentrations of the nine selected molecules were measured by an ultra-fast CG e-nose and Principal Component Analysis (PCA) was applied to detect possible differences among the samples. The PCA results highlighted differences between harvesting years, mainly for 2018, whereas no observable clusters were found concerning varieties and cuts, probably due to the combined effects of the investigated factors. For this reason, the ANOVA Simultaneous Component Analysis (ASCA) methodology was applied on a balanced a posteriori designed dataset. All the considered factors and interactions were statistically significant (p < 0.05) in explaining differences between the basil aroma profiles, with more relevant effects of variety and year.