Project Number: 8042-32420-005-36-R
Project Type: Reimbursable Cooperative Agreement
Start Date: Jan 1, 2012
End Date: Jun 30, 2014
ARS is interested in the role of pre-harvest sources of contaminations to fresh produce. The Cooperator is interested in improving the microbial safety of fresh produce.
Soil (soil amendments, compost) and irrigation water are major sources of pre-harvest contamination of fresh produce. We will utilize plant natural defense mechanism (glucosinolate-derived compounds) as a green manure to control attenuated strains of enteric pathogens in soil. Brassica plants will be grown in hoop houses. After crop harvest, remnant plant tissues will be tilled over as a green manure. Soil inoculated with attenuated strains will be sampled periodically for their persistence in presence of green manure.