Submitted to: Journal of Food Safety
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 11/12/2009
Publication Date: 5/1/2010
Citation: Sommers, C.H., Scullen, O.J., Sites, J.E. 2010. Inactivation of foodborne pathogens on frankfurters using ultraviolet light (254 nm) and GRAS antimicrobials. Journal of Food Safety. 31:1-12. Available: http://www3.interscience.wiley.com/cgi-bin/fulltext/123387396/PDFSTART.
Interpretive Summary: Listeria monocytogenes, Salmonella, and Staphylococcus aureus (foodborne pathogens) are occasional contaminants on frankfurters and sausages. Ultraviolet light (254 nm) is an FDA approved technology for inactivating bacteria on the surface of foods. Potassium lactate, sodium diacetate and lauric arginate ester are FDA approved antimicrobials that can inactivate or prevent the growth of foodborne pathogens. The use of ultraviolet light, in combination with the 3 antimicrobials, inactivated 99.9-99.99 percent (3.6-4.1 log) of a cocktail of L. monocytogenes, Salmonella and S. aureus that was inoculated onto frankfurters by the end of a 12 week storage period. This inactivation was greater than that achieved by the use of ultraviolet light or antimicrobials by themselves. Ultraviolet light and antimicrobials had no effect on frankfurter color or texture. Meat processors may use this pathogen inactivation strategy to provide safer frankfurters and sausages to consumers.
Technical Abstract: Listeria monocytogenes is an occasional contaminant of ready-to-eat meats such as frankfurters and sausages and is responsible for foodborne illness outbreaks and recalls of the subsequently adulterated food products. Salmonella and Staphylococus aureus are prevalent among pathogens which cause foodborne illness. Ultraviolet light (254 nm) (UVC) is a U.S. FDA approved intervention technology that can inactivate foodborne pathogens on frankfurter and precooked sausage surfaces. Potassium lactate (PL), sodium diacetate (SD), and lauric arginate ester (LAE) are U.S. FDA approved antimicrobials that can inactivate and inhibit the growth of foodborne pathogens during refrigerated storage. In this study the use of UVC, in combination with SD, PL, and LAE, to inactivate a cocktail L. monocytogenes, S. aureus, and Salmonella spp. that was surface-inoculated onto frankfurter surfaces was investigated. UVC (0.5 J/cm2) inactivated 1.53-1.64 log of the pathogens on frankfurters that contained SD and PL. Five percent LAE solution applied to the surface of frankfurters that contained SD and PL, in the emulsion, inactivated 1.39-1.65 log of the pathogens. UVC light, when used in combination with the 3 antimicrobials inactivated 2.32-2.80 log of the pathogens. During 12 weeks refrigerated storage (10C) the use of UVC in combination with the 3 antimicrobials was found to be very effective, with 3.6-4.1 log of the 3 pathogens being inactivated by the end of the storage period. UVC and antimicrobials had no impact on frankfurter color or texture. The combinatorial use of UVC and antimicrobials was found to be an effective hurdle against pathogen survival and proliferation.