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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Ionizing Solutions to Future Processor Demands for Safe Food

item Sommers, Christopher

Submitted to: Meeting Abstract
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 4/5/2009
Publication Date: 4/13/2009
Citation: Sommers, C. 2009. Ionizing solutions to future processor demands for safe food [abstract] Grocery Manufacturers Association: New Technology Symposium. Alexandria, VA. p.1.

Interpretive Summary:

Technical Abstract: Food Irradiation is a safe and effective U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved process that can be used to disinfest or delay the maturation of fruits and vegetables, improve the microbiological safety of shellfish, eggs, raw meat and poultry, spices, and seeds used for sprouting. FDA approved food irradiation technologies include gamma radiation from cobalt-60 and accelerator produced electrons and x-rays. The FDA and the World Health Organizations reviewed numerous short-term and long-term feeding studies in animals and in vitro studies prior to approving the use of ionizing radiation to be used as a food safety technology. Irradiation of ground beef, 1.5 kGy for refrigerated and 3.0 kGy for frozen product, results in a 6 log inactivation of E.coli O157:H7, and a 3 log reduction of Salmonella with little or no effect on ground beef quality. An ionizing radiation dose of 1 kGy can be used to disinfest and delay the maturation of fruits and vegetables, and would result in a 4 log reduction of E. coli O157:H7 and a 2 log reduction of Salmonella. Ultraviolet light (UVC) is an FDA approved process that can be used to inactivate microorganisms on food and food contact surfaces. UVC doses of 0.5 - 4 J/cm2 inactivate over 5 log of foodborne pathogens on stainless steel, 3-4 log on smooth skinned fruits and vegetables, 1 log on shell eggs, and 1.5 – 2 log of foodborne pathogens on precooked sausages.

Last Modified: 10/15/2017
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