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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service


Location: Food Safety and Intervention Technologies Research

Title: Irradiation of ready-to-eat meats for pathogen control

item Sommers, Christopher
item Mackay, William

Submitted to: Book Chapter
Publication Type: Book / Chapter
Publication Acceptance Date: 8/14/2011
Publication Date: N/A
Citation: N/A

Interpretive Summary:

Technical Abstract: Ionizing (gamma) radiation is a safe and effective technology that can be used to inactivate foodborne pathogens in a variety of food types, including ready-to-eat (RTE) meats. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is currently evaluating a petition to allow irradiation of RTE meats in the U.S. In this study the ability of ionizing radiation to inactivate Salmonella spp., Staphylococcus aureus, Listeria monocytogenes, Escherichia coli O157:H7, and Yersinia enterocolitica on a variety of RTE meats including deli turkey, ham, pastrami, beef bologna, bacon bits, and pepperoni. A radiation dose of 3.75 kGy inactivated all of the foodborne pathogens by a minimum of five log (99.999%), on all of the RTE meat types, which is sufficient to be labeled as pasteurized according to current regulatory requirements.

Last Modified: 07/20/2017
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