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ARS Home » Pacific West Area » Albany, California » Western Regional Research Center » Healthy Processed Foods Research » Research » Research Project #442720

Research Project: Development of Natural Antimicrobial Agents from Byproducts of Olives

Location: Healthy Processed Foods Research

Project Number: 2030-41000-069-007-R
Project Type: Reimbursable Cooperative Agreement

Start Date: Oct 1, 2021
End Date: Jun 30, 2023

The primary objective of this project is to develop natural antimicrobial treatments (sprays, dips, and/or coatings) made from olive co-products to increase the value of the crop and the overall sustainability of the food ecosystem. A secondary objective of the project is to evaluate the synergistic interactions of dried olive pomace with mild heat or light to enhance antimicrobial properties and validate antimicrobial activity using microbial inoculated specialty crops.

ARS Milczarek lab: Collect, de-pit, and dry pomace during olive harvest season (Oct – Dec 2021 and Oct – Dec 2022). Collection will take place at the California Olive Ranch in Artois, California; this activity may be expanded to other interested olive processors if time and resources allow. Conduct initial quality tests (moisture content, phenolic content, antioxidant activity) of the dried pomace and distribute the dried product to collaborators for further testing. UC Davis Olive Center and Wang Lab: Responsible for overall management of the project and collecting data and monitor and report on outcomes (Nov 2020 – Apr 2023), communicating with the olive oil industry and other specialty crops industry about this project (Nov 2020 – Apr 2023) and performing full panels of phenolic analysis of the dried pomace (Jan – June 2021 and Jan – June 2022). UC Davis Nitin Lab: Responsible for antifungal and antibacterial assays of the dried pomace using spoilage microbes (Botrytis cinerea, and Pseudomonas syringae) and pathogens (E. coli 0157:H7; Listeria monocytogenes). The project will also evaluate the synergistic interactions of these dried pomace with mild heat or light to enhance antimicrobial properties. Further antimicrobial activity will be validated using microbial inoculated specialty crops (Jan – June 2021 and Jan – June 2022).