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ARS Patents Filed and Waiting for Commercial Partners

By Sharon Durham
June 29, 2001

A new system for detecting contaminants during food processing--a potentially important weapon in avoiding food-borne illness--is one example of new technology developed by Agricultural Research Service scientists and available for commercial development.

The system uses near-infrared light and imaging to detect disease-causing microbes on meat. By detecting material that may not be visible to the human eye, this system can target areas that require washing, thus saving money, energy and water, according to ARS scientist William R. Windham. The U.S. Department of Agriculture has filed a patent application on the technology.

Research and patents are only the first steps in bringing technology to the marketplace. Commercial partners are needed to move this and other ARS research to practical implementation. To help accomplish this, the ARS Office of Technology Transfer (OTT) is offering a full listing of current and pending ARS patents on its website. The OTT's redesigned website, searchable and updated daily, also contains information about how to license ARS technologies.

Among other technology featured on the site:

ARS is USDA’s chief scientific research agency.