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OUTSMARTING FOOD AND WATERBORNE PATHOGENS FOR THE SAFE PRODUCTION OF LEAFY GREENS IN RECIRCULATING HYDROPONIC SYSTEMS

Investigators
Dickson, R.; Gibson, Kristen E; Clemencia Rojas
Institutions
University of Arkansas
Start date
2020
End date
2023
Objective
The long-term goal of this Critical Agricultural Research and Extension project is to decrease human food safety risks and plant disease issues with leafy greens in recirculating hydroponic and controlled-environment agriculture (CEA) systems. The context of this goal is based on (i) increasing consumer demand for safe food products, (ii) recent foodborne disease outbreaks in field-grown leafy greens and vegetables, (iii) recurrent crop failures and nationwide economic losses caused by plant pathogens, (iv) increasing use of CEA and hydroponics for food production, and (v) limited published information and available resources regarding the mitigation of pathogen risks in recirculating hydroponic systems. Objectives for reaching our goal include (i) characterizing food safety risks during production in recirculating hydroponic systems, (ii) evaluating hydroponic nutrient effects on plant disease risk, (iii) evaluating soilless substrates and root zone pH effects on food and waterborne pathogens, and (iv) developing and delivering novel extension outreach materials targeting CEA producers.
Funding Source
Nat'l. Inst. of Food and Agriculture
Project source
View this project
Project number
ARK02676
Accession number
1022864
Categories
Bacterial Pathogens
Parasites
Natural Toxins
Viruses and Prions
Chemical Contaminants
Prevention and Control