Submitted to: Journal of Food: Microbiology, Safety, and Hygiene
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 2/1/2017
Publication Date: 2/6/2017
Citation: Hinton Jr, A. 2017. Formulating poultry processing sanitizers from alkaline salts of fatty acids. Journal of Food: Microbiology, Safety, and Hygiene. 1(3):116-117.
Interpretive Summary: Some poultry processing operations remove harmful microbes from the carcass of broiler chickens during processing, but other processing operations can cause further contamination. Although commercial poultry processors use chemical sanitizers to reduce microbial contamination during processing, poultry is still recognized as a major cause of human foodborne diseases. Fatty acids found in plant and animal tissues are natural substances that can kill bacteria, yeasts, and viruses. These microbicidal fatty acids such as, caproic, caprylic, capric, lauric, myristic, and oleic acids also have little or no human toxicity. Soaps are formed when these fatty acids are combined with sodium hydroxide or potassium hydroxides, and the soaps can act as cleansers that maintain the antimicrobial activity of the fatty acids. Since these substances are safe for use on foods, they are ideal candidates for formulating new, effective sanitizers for poultry processing operations. Research focused on making new sanitizers from these fatty acids could produce new sanitizers that can be used produce safe, wholesome poultry meat.
Technical Abstract: Though some poultry processing operations remove microorganisms from carcasses; other processing operations cause cross-contamination that spreads microorganisms between carcasses, processing water, and processing equipment. One method used by commercial poultry processors to reduce microbial contamination during processing is the application of microbicidal, chemical sanitizers to kill microorganisms. However, despite the use of these sanitizers poultry is still recognized as a major cause of human foodborne diseases. Naturally occurring fatty acids (FA) found in plant and animal tissues possess antimicrobial properties that can kill bacteria, yeasts, and viruses. Caproic, caprylic, capric, lauric, myristic, and oleic acids are antimicrobial FA with little or no human toxicity. Alkaline salts of these FA are also surfactants that possess cleansing activity. The microbicidal activity, cleansing activity, and non-toxicity of these compounds make these substances ideal candidates for formulating sanitizers for poultry processing operations. Research focused on formulating novel sanitizers based on alkaline salts of FA could potentially produce a new class of sanitizers that can be used as part of a program to provide consumers with safer, wholesome poultry products.