Efficacy in Reducing Microorganisms on Different Produce Surfaces

The efficacy of batch and continuous ClO2 gas treatments in reducing pathogenic and spoilage microorganisms on several fruits and vegetables, including green peppers, apples, potatoes, strawberries, cantaloupes, and lettuce, has been evaluated (Table 18.4). Results show that more than a 5 log reduction of selected pathogens such as E. coli O157:H7, L. monocytogenes, and Salmonella spp. can be achieved on these produce surfaces while maintaining acceptable quality, except for lettuce leaves where leaf discoloration was noted. Gaseous ClO2 has been shown to be a more effective sanitizer for fruits and vegetables than aqueous ClO2 and chlorinated water wash. More than 6logCFU of L. monocytogenes on uninjured green pepper surfaces and 3.5logCFU on injured surfaces were inactivated using a batch ClO2 treatment system with 3mg/l ClO2 gas treatment for 10 minutes at 20°C and 90 to 95% RH. However, a 3mg/l aqueous ClO2 treatment for 10 minutes at 20° C achieved

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