Submitted to: Book Chapter
Publication Type: Book / Chapter
Publication Acceptance Date: August 23, 2002
Publication Date: N/A
Technical Abstract: Vegetable products, including fresh produce, pre-cut salad vegetables and fresh juices, are among the most minimally processed foods. Often eaten raw or only lightly cooked, these commodities have come under international investigation as sources of food borne illness. While application of conventional preservation and antimicrobial tools, such as heat or chemical lwash treatments, to the special needs of produce is being investigated, among the alternative antimicrobial technologies is the use of ionizing radiation. Low dose irradiation may be implemented post-packaging as a terminal control step, and is therefore of interest to producers of non- thermally pasteurized (NTP) juices, fresh sprouts, pre-cut vegetables, prepared salad mixes, fruit salads and other minimally processed vegetable products as one of several sanitary hurdles in fruit and vegetable processing. This chapter will discuss current research and information related to pathogen prevalence and survival on and in various commodities, the applicability of the various irradiation technologies and their interaction with other antimicrobial measures, and factors that can influence pathogen sensitivity to radiation and post-irradiation product quality and sensorial properties.