I am interested in knowing if there have been studies in quantifying the quality of vegetables and fruits. By simple examination, it is possible for us to identify if a particular vegetable is 'spoilt'. But does this transitioning from 'edible' to 'spoilt' happen instantaneously? Or is it possible to model this transformation by a random process?
When producers and retailers determine shelf life, is it only based on anecdotal knowledge? Is there a systematic process by which quality can be determined and quantified?
I shall be glad if you could point me to studies that look at time to expiry and hazard rates of vegetables under variously controlled environments. I am happy to have the data for one or more common vegetables or fruits.