Many companies face challenges correctly identifying a product’s best by date, resulting often in wasting food that is still acceptable. These producers either don’t want to take the time and effort needed for shelf-life determination, or they don’t know how to conduct shelf-life testing. This course will introduce the Shelf-Life Simplified Paradigm. This approach streamlines shelf-life investigations by narrowing the scope to only consider modes of failure applicable for the expected water activity range of the product. By eliminating the need to track modes of failure that are not likely for the product, collection of time series data that quantifies the mode of failure is much easier. This time series data is needed to construct effective shelf-life models. Traditionally, shelf-life models would only account for temperature as a variable. However, shelf life simplified incorporates the hygrothermal time model, which is the only shelf-life model in the literature that contains both temperature and water activity as variables.

This course will provide examples of how-to setup an accelerated shelf-life study and then use this data to create a hygrothermal time model to predict shelf life at a range of storage conditions. In addition, this course will provide instruction on how water activity controls microbial spoilage and how to prevent and model moisture migration. Finally, the course will cover failures related to texture changes and how establishing a critical water activity can prevent failures. Attendees will be equipped to pursue attainable shelf-life testing on their own products and prevent future product failures through water activity control.

Special note: If you plan on attending any short course (July 15-16) and IFT FIRST (July 16-19), please register here. If you wish to only register for a short course, please click the 'Register' button on this page.


Maya Salazar