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  • Efficacy of Various Consumer-Friendly Produce Washing Technologies in Reducing Pathogens on Fresh Produce

  • Jillian D. Fishburn, Yanjie Tang, Joseph F. Frank

  • Biblographic citation: Food Protection Trends, vol. 32, no. 8, pp. 456-466, August 2012
  • Volume 32, Issue 8

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Disease outbreaks associated with consumption of fresh produce have led to increased demand for technologies that can be used in the home kitchen to decrease pathogen exposure. Produce treatment technologies currently being marketed to consumers include use of electrolyzed oxidizing (EO) water, ozone, and commercial vegetable wash (food-grade soap). In this study, we determined the ability of these technologies, along with chlorine bleach (70 ppm free chlorine) and running tap water, to remove Escherichia coli O157:H7, Listeria monocytogenes, and Salmonella enterica inoculated onto tomatoes, broccoli, cantaloupe, lettuce, spinach, and green onions. Some treatments were more effective than running tap water for specific pathogen-produce combinations, but no treatment produced greater reductions than tap water for all tested combinations. EO water treatment exhibited more consistent effectiveness than the ozone, vegetable wash or tap water and was more effective than chlorine for treating lettuce but less effective than chlorine for treating cantaloupe. The degree of pathogen reduction achieved with the consumer-friendly technologies (1 to 3 log decrease) was similar to reductions achieved in studies using laboratory-generated active agents.