Volume 1-2020

Publisher’s note
Article number: 0007 

Editorial board
Article number: 0008 

Review article
Optical imaging techniques for rice diseases detection: A review
Nur Azizah Bachik, Norhashila Hashim, Aimrun Wayayok, Hasfalina Che Man, Maimunah Mohd Ali
Article number: 0001              Available online: 12 March 2020              http://doi.org/10.37865/jafe.2020.0001

Abstract
Rice diseases have caused great economic losses to farmers in rice cultivation. The current assessment of rice disease evaluation still relies on manual, subjective, and laborious techniques. The manual and subjective evaluations lead to uncertainties since some diseases have almost similar characterisation. The applications of immunological, molecular, and microscope techniques are time-consuming, costly, and skills dependent. Thus, optical techniques are recommended to facilitate the control of diseases through their feasibility, rapidity, and accuracy, which can lead to better management strategies, besides improving production activity. These techniques for detecting and monitoring the diseases are important for precaution and prevention action. The present review discusses the existing and potential optical techniques for the detection of rice diseases. The techniques include optical imaging that consists of computer vision, spectroscopy, multispectral imaging, hyperspectral imaging (HSI), and remote sensing. Thus, this work presents in-depth information related to the nondestructive and potential applications of optical imaging techniques for rice disease detection.


Mini review
A review of non-destructive techniques applied for measuring quality of oil palm fresh fruit bunches
Chen Yee Being, Norhashila Hashim, Bernard Maringgal, Mohd Hafizz Wondi
Article number: 0002              Available online: 12 March 2020              http://doi.org/10.37865/jafe.2020.0002

Abstract
The quality of oil palm fruits is evaluated through several characteristics such as the ripeness level, oil content, and free fatty acid. Besides human visual assessment and destructive techniques, another alternative method that provides quality assessment on oil palm fresh fruits bunches (FFB) is through the application of non-destructive techniques. A few of the non-destructive techniques are covered in this review such as machine vision system, visible or near infrared spectroscopy, image processing using relative entropy, fluorescence technique, Kinect camera, and optical sensor system. The main quality parameter that is being evaluated is the ripeness level of the FFB because the maturity of FFB has a direct impact on the quality of the extracted oil that will eventually affect the economic value of palm oil.


Mini review

Quality evaluation of mango using non-destructive approaches: A review

Ong Phey Zhen, Norhashila Hashim, Bernard Maringgal
Article number: 0003              Available online: 12 March 2020              http://doi.org/10.37865/jafe.2020.0003

Abstract
Mango (Mangifera indica L.) is one of the most popular and nutritionally rich fruits. It is also acknowledged as the king of fruits in India. Quality attributes of mango fruit depends on its appearances such as size, shape, skin colour, flesh colour, flavour, sweetness, and aroma. Over the recent years, non-destructive techniques have been garnering the interest of researchers as potential technologies that can be used for quality assessment of fruits in a part of postharvest processing. The present patterns of non-destructive techniques are more efficient, inexpensive, yield faster and accurate results. This mini review paper focuses on some of the previous applications of non-destructive techniques in quality evaluation of mango, focusing specifically on the non-destructive technique based on quality parameters. The future trend of using non-destructive techniques for quality evaluation is also discussed in this review paper.


Research article

Colour evaluation of sterilized and unsterilized palm fruitlets mesocarp at different storage time

Mohd Hafizz Wondi, Rosnah Shamsudin, Robiah Yunus, Nur Izzah Nabilah Haris
Article number: 0004              Available online: 12 March 2020              http://doi.org/10.37865/jafe.2020.0004

Abstract
Colour has been widely used in agriculture application in order to indicate the different level of ripeness and freshness of fruits and food. In this study, the freshness of oil palm fruitlet was evaluated by measuring its colour using colorimeter. Two types of oil palm fruitlets were investigated; sterilized and unsterilized, and the fruitlets were exposed to the environment for three days. The measurement of colour (in terms of L*, a*, and b* values) was measured using Konica Colour Reader on an exposed surface that was cut to specific dimension. The individual parameters of L*, a*, b* colour systems were measured daily for three days. The findings revealed that the unsterilized fruitlet showed the most significant color change after three days which indicates that oxidation and deterioration of the freshness continues to occur. The sterilized fruitlet did not show any major difference of colour value which can be explained by the inhibition of enzyme activity by sterilization process that causes oxidation. This study has proven that colour can be used to evaluate the freshness and oxidation of oil palm fruitlets. The findings of this study will be useful for palm oil industry to develop a proper palm freshness evaluation system.


Short communication

Electrolyzed water as a sustainable cleaning and disinfection chemical for SMEs Malaysian meat processing food industries: Challenges and uncertainties

Nurul Izzah Khalid, Norashikin Ab Aziz, Nurfatimah Mohd Thani, Ruzanna Shapi’i, Nur Farhana Abd Rahman
Article number: 0006              Available online: 12 March 2020              http://doi.org/10.37865/jafe.2020.0006


Research article

Effects of different low temperature storage conditions on the physico-chemical properties of Mastura (J37) jackfruit bulbs

Amiruddin Mat Johari, Nur Aliaa Abd Rahman, Azhari Samsu Baharuddin, Roseliza Kadir Basha, Mohd Afandi P. Mohammed, Dzieda Muhamad Parid, Siti Zubaidah Abdul Razak, Minato Wakisaka
Article number: 0009              Available online: 2 April 2020              http://doi.org/10.37865/jafe.2020.0009

Abstract
Mastura (J37) jackfruit planted in Pahang (Malaysia) is less preferred by the consumers and has caused backlog in the plantation as reported by Pahang State Farmers Association (PASFA). In this study, the proposed solution given was to use vacuum packaging to pack the bulbs and store them at 8-10ᵒC (refrigerator) and -18ᵒC (deep-freezer). After 3 weeks of storage, deep-frozen vacuum-packed bulbs had lower ripening index (265) and microbial count (6 × 102 cfu/ml) when compared to refrigerated vacuum-packed bulbs which had higher ripening index (629) and higher microbial count (52 × 102 cfu/ml). The lightness, L* value of vacuum-packed jackfruit bulb samples under deep-freeze storage was higher compared to the ones under refrigeration storage. The output obtained from this work provides preliminary data which are useful for Mastura (J37) jackfruit further downstream processing. These data are helpful as they contribute towards the understanding of further processing of this particular jackfruit variety into end products, in order to solve the issue faced by PASFA.


Research article

Purity and structural composition of lignin isolated from Miscanthus x giganteus by sub-critical water extraction with associated modifiers

Muhammad Hazwan Hamzah, Steve Bowra, Philip Cox
Article number: 0010              Available online: 15 April 2020              http://doi.org/10.37865/jafe.2020.0010

Abstract
Lignin is an industrial by-product produced from the pulping and paper industry, where the process generates lignin in the form of lignosulphonates. While there are many applications for lignin, there are all low value and attempts to add value to lignin are hindered by its complex physicochemical nature and the presence of sulphur. Adopting the biorefining concept, the study evaluates the impact of direct (DE) and sequential extraction (SE) of Miscanthus x giganteus using sub-critical water with associated modifiers; ethanol and carbon dioxide on the physical and chemical properties of the extracted lignin. Isolated lignins were characterised by a Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy (FTIR). Although higher delignification was achieved by DE and SE about 81.5% and 58.0%, respectively, the lignin recovered from the SE process showed remarkably higher purity with 91.5%. Lignin recovery did not differ considerably for either processing method. FTIR revealed a qualitative reduction in the intensity of bonds corresponding to hydroxyl groups for the lignin derived from DE rather than SE processing routes. These indicated that the lignin derived from SE had potential for subsequent preparation in lignin value-added bio-based materials.


Mini review

An overview of non-destructive approaches for quality determination in pineapples

Maimunah Mohd Ali, Norhashila Hashim, Samsuzana Abd Aziz, Ola Lasekan
Article number: 0011              Available online: 2 May 2020              http://doi.org/10.37865/jafe.2020.0011

Abstract
Pineapple is one of the healthful and popular tropical fruits in the world. The quality determination of pineapples was mostly evaluated by human inspection which is inconsistent and subjective. The increasing demand for pineapples creates more opportunities for the advancement of rapid and non-destructive approaches to seek quality evaluation of the fruit. This review gives an overview of the non-destructive approaches on the quality determination of pineapples including computer vision, imaging-based approaches, spectroscopy-based approaches, acoustic impulse, and electronic nose. The advance of non-destructive techniques to evaluate the quality of pineapple can produce better yield and improve postharvest handling. This paper also highlighted the recent works on the quality determination of pineapple fruit using non-destructive approaches along with the abundant information that can be explored for real-time purposes. This information is expected to be useful not only for pineapples growers/industries but also for other agro-food commodities.

Research article
Consumers’ delayed consumption of bakery products: Effect on physical and chemical properties
Nurfatimah Mohd Thani, Siti Mazlina Mustapa Kamal, Alifdalino Sulaiman, Farah Saleena Taip, Rozita Omar
Article number: 0013             Available online: 4 May 2020              http://doi.org/10.37865/jafe.2020.0013

Abstract
Delay in the consumption of bakery products has contributed to the food waste problem, which is a serious global issue. Delayed consumption or can be regarded as the ‘leftovers’ bakery products such as croissants and doughnuts are normally discarded due to the impairment in texture or quality degradation causing them to taste not as good as fresh baked, although the products still edible. Thus, this study aims to evaluate the physical and chemical changes during the delaying of consumption of croissants and doughnuts at three (3) different storage times (day 0, 1 and 2). The hardness of croissants and doughnuts had an increased throughout storage time, with doughnuts have the higher hardness than croissants, with 175.63 % and 92.31 % increased, respectively. Carbohydrate was found as the major component for croissants and doughnuts. Croissants and doughnuts recorded carbohydrate content of (50.32-52.42 %) and (43.22-46.59 %), respectively, from day 0 to day 2. While sugar profile analysis detected three types of monosaccharides sugars, which were fructose, glucose and maltose for croissants and doughnuts. Thus, high content of carbohydrate and monosaccharides that available in the leftovers doughnut and croissants suggest that it could potentially be used as renewable resources for sugar recovery.

Short communication
Capturing the impact of nanobubble liquid in enhancing the physical quality of ice cream
Norhafizah Mohamad Khair, Nur Aliaa Abd Rahman, Azhari Samsu Baharuddin, Halimatun Saadiah Hafid, Minato Wakisaka
Article number: 0012             Available online: 11 May 2020              http://doi.org/10.37865/jafe.2020.0012

Abstract
Nanobubbles are bubbles of nanometer to micrometer size and are dispersed in a liquid water. In recent years, nanobubbles technology has been used in an extensive range of application such as in drinking water, agriculture, fishery, wastewater treatment and food. In ice cream, air cells are important for the smooth texture of ice cream. In this study, the effects of using nanobubble liquid in ice cream was compared with the one using normal water. Samples were prepared and analysis was conducted to check the physical properties of ice cream. Based on the results obtained, the apparent viscosity of ice cream made using nanobubble liquid (INBL) and normal water (INW) were 0.211 Pa.s and 0.149 Pa.s, respectively. INBL ice cream had higher density and firmness which were 0.77 g/mL and 34.80 gram-force, respectively while INM ice cream had slightly lower density and firmness which were 0.74 g/mL and 29.93 gram-force, respectively. The overrun of INBL ice cream was lower which was 46 % while INW ice cream was 54 %. For both INW and  INBL ice creams, the fastest melting rate was recorded between 10-30 min at the rate of 1.491 g/min and 1.558 g/min, respectively. INBL ice cream held its body slightly longer and melted a bit later than INW ice cream. As a conclusion, ice cream with lower overrun is denser and has rich texture. Smaller air bubbles are able to hold the ice cream body better than the ones with larger air bubbles. Nanobubble liquid ice cream has higher firmness value which indicates its ability to better retain its shape.

Review article
Pulp and paper production from oil palm empty fruit bunches: A current direction in Malaysia
Maimunah Mohd Ali, Nur ‘Atirah Muhadi, Norhashila Hashim, Ahmad Fikri Abdullah, Muhammad Razif Mahadi
Article number: 0017             Available online: 15 July 2020              http://doi.org/10.37865/jafe.2020.0017

Abstract
The pulp and paper industry is advanced rapidly since there are many types of raw materials containing cellulose fibres that could be used to produce different kinds of paper by different methods in the mills. In Malaysia, one of the abundant non-wood materials for pulp and paper production is empty fruit bunch (EFB) from the oil palm. The EFB is the main fibrous residue and natural fibre which has promising potential as an alternative to replace woody materials. This study provides insight into the use of EFB as an alternative non-wood fibre resource in pulp and paper making. The potential of oil palm EFB transformed into valuable fibre material was elaborated. In this review, detailed information on the properties of EFB for pulp and paper making process to identify the chemical composition and fibre morphology were discussed. Recent advanced applications including nanocellulose from EFB, polymeric hydrogel, and antimicrobial papers were discussed to demonstrate high commercialization for pulp and paper technology. The three-dimensional (3D) printing technique has been employed due to the high complexity of paper products. The future trends and challenges regarding the use of EFB in pulp and paper making were also reviewed. This study demonstrated that the EFB has met the demand of the market chains as a potential raw material in paper making and manufacturing.

Research article
Effects of low temperature storage of Mastura (J37) jackfruit bulbs on the physical quality of jackfruit frozen confection
Amiruddin Mat Johari, Nur Aliaa Abd Rahman, Azhari Samsu Baharuddin, Roseliza Kadir Basha, Minato Wakisaka
Article number: 0016             Available online: 21 July 2020              http://doi.org/10.37865/jafe.2020.0016

Abstract
Mastura (J37) jackfruit variety planted in Pahang (Malaysia) is less preferred by the consumers due to its low sweetness and high-water content properties. This has caused major backlog in the plantation as reported by Pahang State Farmers Association (PASFA). In this study, among the proposed solutions given was to build a frozen confection processing line to further process the flesh. The jackfruit used were vacuum-packed and stored under refrigerated and frozen conditions. The overrun, melting resistance, and hardness of jackfruit frozen confection produced from jackfruit stored in both low temperature conditions showed comparable results. The overrun of 50 to 55 % were obtained for frozen samples at different weeks. Jackfruit frozen confections had lower overrun compared to the controlled sample as air incorporation was prevented by the elements contained in jackfruit. The control frozen confection sample without addition of jackfruit puree resulted in an average melting mass of 24.6 g and melting resistance of 59 % which was the strongest melting resistance in comparison to other jackfruit frozen confections. The inconsistent hardness of jackfruit frozen confections suggests that the content of total soluble solid increased throughout week 1 to week 3 for refrigeration storage and week 1 to week 6 for deep-freeze storage had no trending effect on the hardness of frozen confection. The output obtained from this work provides data for the downstream processing of Mastura (J37) jackfruit. These data are helpful as they contribute towards the understanding of further processing of this particular jackfruit variety into end products, in order to solve the issue faced by PASFA. The solution helps decrease waste generated from the surplus and value add the variety.

Short communication
Commercialization of active packaging: Expectation vs reality
Ruzanna Ahmad Shapi’i 
Article number: 0023             Available online: 16 September 2020              http://doi.org/10.37865/jafe.2020.0023

Research article
Irrigation and crop water requirement estimation for oil palms using soil moisture balance model in Peninsular Malaysia
Adesiji, Adeolu Richard, Nik Daud, Nik Norsyahariati, Asogwa, Evarestus Osita, Mangey, Jarumi Akila, Musa, Hassan Hassan, Adaudu, Ignatius Idoko
Article number: 0018             Available online: 18 September 2020              http://doi.org/10.37865/jafe.2020.0018

Abstract
This study presents the irrigation and crop water estimation in a Malaysian oil palm plantation for effective irrigation water management during water years 2013 and 2014. The study area was divided into four plots: 2000, 2002, 2006 and 2010, indicating years of peat swamp forest conversion to oil palm plantation. Hydrologic Engineering Centre-Hydrologic Modeling System (HEC-HMS) and Soil moisture balance hydrologic models were used to model the rainfall-runoff in the basin. Statistical analysis using coefficient of determination (R2) and Nash–Sutcliffe efficiency coefficient (NSE) were used to evaluate the performance and correlation of the two hydrologic models. The result showed that R2 and NSE were 0.94 and 0.90 respectively for calibration and 0.92 and 0.54 respectively, for monthly validation. This showed that the models performed well for simulation of the peatland hydrology. With the modelling of rainfall-runoff satisfied, the irrigation demand of the study plots was determined using the same soil moisture balance model. The irrigation demand ranged from 0.893 to 1.6 million cubic meters (MCM) in 2010 and 2000 study plots respectively. Irrigation demand is observed to be site specific which depends on the soil moisture deficit, readily available water in the oil palm root zone and oil palm rooting depth. Estimation of a future oil palm water requirement using the soil moisture balance model would be recommended for further studies for use as an advisory manual for the oil palm managers to enhance adequate water resources planning for oil palm productivity.

Review article
Application of organic photovoltaic materials (OPV) as greenhouse roof structures: A review
Li Lu, Mohammad Effendy Ya’acob
Article number: 0019             Available online: 18 September 2020              http://doi.org/10.37865/jafe.2020.0019

Abstract
Organic Photovoltaic (OPV), as a third-generation PV technology, is becoming an appropriate substance used for greenhouse roofing structures. Semi-transparent OPV has a variety of merits such as low weight, flexibility, low environment impact and short energy payback time. Besides, it can harness larger amounts of sunlight as means of a very strong light absorbent material. This study shares some of the latest research which examines the feasibility of using semi-transparent, flexible organic photovoltaic (OPV) modules as greenhouse shading material. By using such modules, it may be possible to utilize the existing greenhouse-based agricultural areas for electricity production. The concept projects OPV modules to shade greenhouses and reduces excess solar energy which may result in reducing internal surrounding heat thus helps to mitigate the control environment. This will furthermore control plant heat stress which is one of the most important factors for plant growth. Some conclusion on the quality and quantity of plants with respect to the energy consumption in the greenhouse are also discussed.

Research article
Assessment of evaporative cooling system potential for short-term storage management of vegetables during transportation
Masniza Sairi, Mohd Shukry Hassan Basri, Nur Syafini Ghazali, Joanna Cho Lee Ying, Shafie Alwi, Mohd Shahrir Azizan, Mohd Fazly Mail, Azhar Mat Noor, Nur Izzati Muhsin and Mohamad Abhar Akmal Hamid
Article number: 0021             Available online: 18 September 2020              http://doi.org/10.37865/jafe.2020.0021

Abstract
A system based on direct evaporative cooling principle for short-term storage management of vegetables during transportation was designed, developed and assessed its performance. The evaporative cooling applies the principle of water evaporation to achieve temperature reduction and relative humidity increment. The system comprises evaporative cooler, power supply (battery, battery charger and power inverter), control panel, storage unit and real-time data monitoring (of temperature, T and relative humidity, RH). The evaporative cooler consists water reservoir, pump, cooling pad, extraction fan, connecting pipe and control panel. The system (that applies alternating current (AC)) can be powered by two-12 V serial truck batteries (direct current, DC) via power inverter. In this research, the effect of water type towards cooling process inside storage unit was studied too. The use of icy water as an evaporation media exhibited higher temperature reduction, DT (6.11 ± 2.30 °C) as compared to ambient water (4.06 ± 1.91 °C). RH for both cases achieved 99 %. The quality of selected leafy vegetables (green amaranth, water spinach and choysum) for fresh market that underwent evaporative cooling storage treatment (T1) was assessed. Post four-hour storage, leafy vegetables stored under T1 exhibited the least weight loss as compared to ambient storage treatment (T2) and cold storage treatment (T3). However, post two-week storage, the vegetables quality that underwent T1 was comparable to T2, but slightly lower than T3. The system exhibited potential to maintain vegetables quality during the short-term storage in transportation.

Research article
Comparison of field performances between two typical mini combine harvesters in grain corn production
Mohamad Hairie Masroon, Nazmi Mat Nawi, Azmi Yahya, Mohamad Firdza Shukery, Mohamed Ezzeldien Salih Amin
Article number: 0022             Available online: 20 September 2020              http://doi.org/10.37865/jafe.2020.0022

Abstract
A mini combine harvester was efficiently designed and developed to harvest grain corn on a small scale farm in order to reduce manpower and operating time as delayed harvesting leads to grain loss.  Two typical mini combine harvesters namely Kubota DC105X (KDC) and World Star 7.0Plus (WS) have been introduced to farmers as high output, low fuel consumption and ease of maintenance in grain corn production. This research was undertaken to evaluate and compare the field performance of KDC and WS mini combine harvester which included the field efficiency (FE), effective field capacity (EFC), fuel consumption (FC), field machine index (FMI) and total field time under similar field condition and soil properties. A time-motion study was conducted during harvesting in two consecutive growing seasons. The mean values of EFC, FE, FC, FMI and total field time for KDC were found to be 0.28 ha/hr, 50.00%, 16.85 l/ha, 0.84 and 3.55 hr/ha, respectively. The mean values of EFC, FE, FC, FMI and total field time for WS were found to be 0.25 ha/hr, 54.35%, 12.57 l/ha, 0.81 and 3.99 hr/ha, respectively. The statistical analysis (ANOVA) shows that there were no significant differences in field performance between both mini combine harvesters at 5% significance level (α = 0.05). Both mini combine harvesters had performed with consistent and reliable results in conducting the harvesting. This study concludes that the WS is more efficient than KDC in terms of FE and FC.