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Improving the microbiological safety of fresh and processed produce products

Danyluk, Michelle
University of Florida
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The overall goal of this project is to provide data related to the microbial (bacterial) safety and spoilage risks associated with fresh produce production, packing and handling practices, fresh cut, processing, retail and consumer practices. This knowledge will enable the fruit, vegetable and nut industries to provide scientific backing to risks of contamination in their production practices and facilities and documentation for methods used to reduce these risks. Additionally, results from this work will allow the food service industry and consumers to determine appropriate responses to reduce risks from consuming these products. Specific objectives include:To conduct surveillance, epidemiological and transfer studies in order to determine the points and sources during production and processing of specific fruits, vegetables and nuts where foodborne pathogens may be introduced and the effect that varying production, processing, and environmental factors may have on the contamination eventTo characterize microbial survival, growth and contamination mechanisms of foodborne pathogens on specific commodities of importance to Florida, the environment in which they are grown/processed, including microbial interactions within populationsTo develop and test mitigation and management strategies to control foodborne pathogens on these products and the surfaces they may come into contact with during production, packing or processing
Funding Source
Nat'l. Inst. of Food and Agriculture
Project source
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Bacterial Pathogens