Dr. Lihua Fan, CFS

Image Lihua Fan
Research Scientist

Dr. Fan is a food scientist/food microbiologist. Her research addresses both fundamental and practical challenges related to improvement of safety and quality of horticultural produce and food products. She has successfully initiated and led numerous national and international collaborative research projects and has been interacting effectively with government, industry and university collaborators. She has supervised AAFC's and industry technicians, graduate students, co-op and summer students, and visiting scientists. Dr. Fan's research activities and achievements contribute to the Agri-food science and the food industry through generating new knowledge, publishing scientific papers, giving presentations at national and international scientific conferences, developing practical applications and providing scientific advice that industries have incorporated into their handling practices to develop and market the novel food products.

Current research and/or projects

  • New Technologies and Natural Antimicrobials to Improve Microbial and Produce Quality, and Extend Shelf Life of Fresh and Fresh-cut Fruit and Vegetables
  • Carotenoids-producing Yeasts and/or Bacteria of Biotechnological Importance 
  • ASC-12 Grape Wine Cluster Activity 13- Improving Wine Quality Through Mixed and Sequential Fermentations with Indigenous Yeasts 
  • Characterisation of Heat-resistant Molds (HRM) Isolated from Frozen Wild Blueberries and Developing New Blueberry Products 
  • Studies on Properties of Lactic Acid Bacteria and  Development of Fermentation Processes and Fermented Food Products 

Research and/or project statements

Dr. Fan’s research focuses on food safety and quality:

  • applying fermentation technology to improve flavour and nutrition of value-added foods;
  • characterising and selecting native yeasts to improve wine quality;
  • developing novel natural antimicrobials from plant and bacterial origins for food protection;
  • ensuring microbial safety/quality of whole and fresh-cut fruit and vegetables;
  • controlling heat-resistant molds to extend shelf life of processed food products;
  • developing innovative technologies to control post-harvest decay of horticultural produce.

Education and awards

1984. Bachelor Degree. Horticulture. China Agricultural University. Beijing

1989. Master Degree. Food Science/Microbiology. China Agricultural University. Beijing

1991. Ph.D. Food Science/Microbiology. China Agricultural University. Beijing

2009. Received the Canadian Forces Liaison Council’s Nova Scotia Provincial Award for Best Practices in Employer Support.

Since 2013. Certified Food Scientist (CFS)- professional honor and recognized globally.

International experience and/or work

1984-1986. Researcher. Beijing Agricultural Academy of Sciences, Beijing, China

1991-1992. Faculty (Lecturer). Department of Food Science, China Agricultural University. Beijing

1992-1994. Visiting Scientist. Institute of Food Technology, University of Hohenheim. Stuttgart, Germany

1995-1998. Visiting Researcher. Department of Horticulture, Michigan State University. Michigan, USA

Key publications

  1. McClure, K.A., Gong, Y.H., Song, J., Vinqvist-Tymchuk, M., Campbell Palmer, L., Fan, L., Burgher-MacLellan, K., Zhang, Z.Q., Celton, J.M., Forney, C.F., Migicovsky, Z., Myles, S. (2019). Genome-wide association studies in apple reveal loci of large effect controlling apple polyphenols, 6(1), http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41438-019-0190-y

    2019 - View publication details

  2. Yang, E., Fan, L., Yan, J., Jiang, Y., Doucette, C., Fillmore, S., Walker, B. (2018). Influence of culture media, pH and temperature on growth and bacteriocin production of bacteriocinogenic lactic acid bacteria, 8(1), http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s13568-018-0536-0

    2018 - View publication details

  3. Bezanson, G.S., Ells, T.C., Fan, L., Forney, C.F., LeBlanc, D.I. (2018). Aerated Steam Sanitization of Whole Fresh Cantaloupes Reduces and Controls Rind-Associated Listeria but Enhances Fruit Susceptibility to Secondary Colonization, 83(4), 1025-1031. http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/1750-3841.14082

    2018 - View publication details

  4. Forney, C.F., Fan, L., Bezanson, G.S., Ells, T.C., LeBlanc, D.I., Fillmore, S. (2018). Impact of Listeria Inoculation and Aerated Steam Sanitization on Volatile Emissions of Whole Fresh Cantaloupes, 83(4), 1017-1024. http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/1750-3841.14092

    2018 - View publication details

  5. Fan, L., Martynenko, A., Doucette, C., Hughes, T., Fillmore, S. (2018). Microbial Quality and Shelf Life of Blueberry Purée Developed Using Cavitation Technology, 83(3), 732-739. http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/1750-3841.14073

    2018 - View publication details

  6. McClure, K.A., Gardner, K.M., Douglas, G.M., Song, J., Forney, C.F., Delong, J., Fan, L., Du, L., Toivonen, P.M.A., Somers, D.J., Rajcan, I., Myles, S. (2018). A genome-wide association study of apple quality and scab resistance, 11(1), http://dx.doi.org/10.3835/plantgenome2017.08.0075

    2018 - View publication details

  7. DeLong, J.M., Hodges, D.M., Prange, R.K., Forney, C.F., Fan, L., Bishop, M.C., Elliot, M.L., Jordan, M.A., Doucette, C. (2013). The influence of cold water storage on fatty acids, antioxidant content and activity, and microbial load in ostrich fern (Matteuccia struthiopteris) fiddleheads, 93(4), 683-697. http://dx.doi.org/10.4141/CJPS2012-165

    2013 - View publication details

  8. Chen, S., Fan, L., Song, J., Liu, C., Zhang, H. (2013). Identification of irradiated meats by determining o- and m-tyrosine as markers, 93(2), 226-232. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.meatsci.2012.08.022

    2013 - View publication details

  9. Yang, E., Fan, L., Jiang, Y., Doucette, C., Fillmore, S. (2012). Antimicrobial activity of bacteriocin-producing lactic acid bacteria isolated from cheeses and yogurts, 2(1), 1-12. http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/2191-0855-2-48

    2012 - View publication details

  10. Fan, L., Song, J., Forney, C.F., Jordan, M.A. (2011). Fruit maturity affects the response of apples to heat stress, 62(1), 35-42. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.postharvbio.2011.04.007

    2011 - View publication details

  11. Yang, E., Fan, L., Jiang, Y., Doucette, C., Fillmore, S. (2011). Antimicrobial effects of a commercial fermentation product on fresh-cut onions, 74(3), 470-474. http://dx.doi.org/10.4315/0362-028X.JFP-10-194

    2011 - View publication details

  12. Songe, J., Fan, L., Forney, C., Campbell-Palmer, L., Fillmore, S. (2010). Effect of hexanal vapor to control postharvest decay and extend shelf-life of highbush blueberry fruit during controlled atmosphere storage, 90(3), 359-366. http://dx.doi.org/10.4141/CJPS09135

    2010 - View publication details

  13. Sharpe, D., Fan, L., McRae, K., Walker, B., MacKay, R., Doucette, C. (2009). Effects of ozone treatment on botrytis cinerea and sclerotinia sclerotiorum in relation to horticultural product quality, 74(6), http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1750-3841.2009.01234.x

    2009 - View publication details

  14. Hildebrand, P.D., Forney, C.F., Song, J., Fan, L., McRae, K.B. (2008). Effect of a continuous low ozone exposure (50 nL L-1) on decay and quality of stored carrots, 49(3), 397-402. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.postharvbio.2008.03.012

    2008 - View publication details

  15. Fan, L., Song, J., McRae, K.B., Walker, B.A., Sharpe, D. (2007). Gaseous ozone treatment inactivates Listeria innocua in vitro, 103(6), 2657-2663. http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1365-2672.2007.03522.x

    2007 - View publication details

  16. Forney, C.F., Song, J., Hildebrand, P.D., Fan, L., McRae, K.B. (2007). Interactive effects of ozone and 1-methylcyclopropene on decay resistance and quality of stored carrots, 45(3), 341-348. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.postharvbio.2007.03.006

    2007 - View publication details

  17. Song, J., Hildebrand, P.D., Fan, L., Forney, C.F., Renderos, W.E., Campbell-Palmer, L., Doucette, C. (2007). Effect of hexanal vapor on the growth of postharvest pathogens and fruit decay, 72(4), http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1750-3841.2007.00341.x

    2007 - View publication details

Research facility

32 Main Street
Kentville, NS B4N 1J5


  • Affiliated with Dalhousie University and Saint Mary's University, Halifax, Nova Scotia. As a graduate students' supervisory committee member and adjunct professor.
  • As a member of the International Association for Food Protection (IAFP) 
  • As a member of the Institute of Food Technologist (IFT)- Professional member group and Food Microbiology Division 
  • As an evaluation group member for the National Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC)'s Discovery Grants 





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