Application of electronic nose as a non-invasive technique for odor fingerprinting and detection of bacterial foodborne pathogens: a review

  • Ernest Bonah
  • Xingyi HuangEmail author
  • Joshua Harrington Aheto
  • Richard Osae
Review Article


Food safety issues across the global food supply chain have become paramount in promoting public health safety and commercial success of global food industries. As food regulations and consumer expectations continue to advance around the world, notwithstanding the latest technology, detection tools, regulations and consumer education on food safety and quality, there is still an upsurge of foodborne disease outbreaks across the globe. The development of the Electronic nose as a noninvasive technique suitable for detecting volatile compounds have been applied for food safety and quality analysis. Application of E-nose for pathogen detection has been successful and superior to conventional methods. E-nose offers a method that is noninvasive, fast and requires little or no sample preparation, thus making it ideal for use as an online monitoring tool. This manuscript presents an in-depth review of the application of electronic nose (E-nose) for food safety, with emphasis on classification and detection of foodborne pathogens. We summarise recent data and publications on foodborne pathogen detection (2006–2018) and by E-nose together with their methodologies and pattern recognition tools employed. E-nose instrumentation, sensing technologies and pattern recognition models are also summarised and future trends and challenges, as well as research perspectives, are discussed.


Sensors Pattern recognition Foodborne pathogens Volatile organic compounds (VOCs) Electronic nose 



This work was sponsored by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (No. 31671932).

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


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© Association of Food Scientists & Technologists (India) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Food and Biological EngineeringJiangsu UniversityZhenjiangPeople’s Republic of China
  2. 2.Laboratory Services DepartmentFood and Drugs AuthorityCantonments – AccraGhana

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