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Animal Science Food Safety Consortium - Kansas State University


<OL> <LI> To develop technology for rapid identification of infectious agents and toxins. <LI> To develop a statistical framework necessary to evaluate the potential health risks. <LI> To determine the most effective intervention points to control microbiological or chemical hazards. <LI> To develop risk monitoring techniques to detect potential hazards in the distribution chain. <LI> To develop risk assesment and interdiction actions in hazard reduction and control. <LI> To develop technology to reduce the hazards and improve the quality of animal food products, which will complement and development of HACCP programs by USDA. <LI> To develop, complement and maintain an aggressive technology transfer system that effectively communicates the work of the Consortium to consumers, students, industry, government and other scientific investigations.

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NON-TECHNICAL SUMMARY: The Kansas State University Consortium Team continues to take the farm to table approach to address food safety challenges. That approach includes the continued development of methods for hazard detection; intervention strategies to control those hazards, and information transfer of technologies to the scientific community, the federal government, the food industries, and consumers. The primary focus of the work at Kansas State University continues to be methods development for the isolation, detection, and quantification of microbial and chemical hazards and the elimination of those hazards.


APPROACH: Technology development for rapid and automated isolation, detection, identification, and quantification of infectious agents and toxins continues to be an area of emphasis. By determining the most effective intervention points to control microbiological and chemical hazards, as well the overall strategies to control those hazards, the statistical framework to evaluate the potential health risks can be enhanced. Continuing to build on these efforts will result in the development of risk monitoring techniques to detect potential hazards from production through distribution. Once the risk has been detected the appropriate continued actions will be taken to reduce and control the hazard. The reduction and control strategies will involve previously researched intervention technologies. Where needed, other interventions strategies will be developed and validated. Because of the ongoing need to support HACCP programs by USDA, strategies will be continue to be focused on HACCP requirements as a guiding principle. Once technologies and strategies are validated as effective, technology and information transfer efforts will be implemented. In fact Consortium scientists work closely with industry, government, and consumer groups to insure timely technology transfer. Additionally, that information is and will continue to be incorporated into on-campus course as well as distance education courses delivered to off-campus audiences.


PROGRESS: 2005/08 TO 2008/07 <BR>
OUTPUTS: The jerky compliance guideline from the U.S. Department of Agriculture Food Safety and Inspection Service recommends that water activity (aw) be used for the determination of drying and safety rather than only moisture-protein-ratio. However, no standardized sample preparation method was included in the guideline for analyzing water activity levels in jerky. Two sample preparation methods were examined for whole muscle (WM) and chopped and formed (CF) beef jerky. Results indicate that processors should use the intact hexagonal shape method for WM jerky to obtain a more conservative aw level especially if aw values are near 0.80, a margin of safety. Pathatrix is a unique, large volume, recirculating immunomagnetic capture system that selectively concentrates low levels of target microbial pathogens from complex food matrices. Pathatrix was used to evaluate Escherichia coli 0157:H7 in broth and yogurt. The finding indicated the Pathatrix system has applications for rapid and precise detection of E.coli O157:H7. The Food Safety Consortium is a supporter or the International Workshop on Rapid Methods and Automation in Microbiology because of the unique technology transfer opportunities through the workshop for Consortium research results. This workshop has attracted about 4,000 participants from 60 countries since 1981. Heterocyclic amines (HCAs), a group of chemicals formed during high temperature cooking of meat and fish, are potent mutagens and are suspected to play a role in various cancers in human. The main HCA-reducing effect was due to the herbs and spices contained in the marinade. The barbeque and marinade sauces decreased the HCAs to undetectable levels which presents an easy practical method by which the consumer can reduce HCA levels in grill meats. The addition of the rosemary extracts is an important factor in decreasing carcinogenic compounds in meat products. If avian influenza (HPAI) were to be discovered in a U.S. commercial flock, the response would involve culling/depopulation of infected flocks. Because the U.S. is a large exporter (account for 27 percent of global exports), reduced U.S. supply will lead to higher world prices absent any demand reduction. A U.S. case of HPAI would be followed by trade restrictions from importing countries. Assuming a total ban for a period of one year, the total loss in export revenue is estimated at around $2 billion with domestic consumers benefiting from lower domestic prices. World market prices would increase benefiting producers in HPAI-free countries. While proper cooking skills the bird flu virus and would protect consumers if the disease was found in the U.S., it is likely that some reduction in domestic demand would accompany an announcement of bird flu's discovery in this country. Policy analysis, historical-studies and multidisciplinary-synthesis research has appeared in a variety of formats during the last year. In addition, the Frontier website - - has been revamped, featuring not only research content but also multimedia and pod-casting features. <BR>PARTICIPANTS: Consortium involves Kansas State University, University of Arkansas, and Iowa State University <BR>TARGET AUDIENCES: Academia, Consumers, Industry, Government <BR><BR>
IMPACT: 2005/08 TO 2008/07<BR>
The focus on microbial food safety by the K-State food microbiology group continues to be on methods of development and validation studies. That work continues to be transferred to end users through efforts such as the Rapid Methods and Automation in Microbiology Workshop. The chemical food safety effort continues to attract recognition because of work on ammonia contamination, safety of grilled meat, and methods for measuring irradiation of beef. Along with the long standing emphasis on microbial and chemical food safety has been transfer of that information through distance education initiatives. Additionally, the economics, policy, and trade implication of food safety as well as food security are also chronicled in scientific and popular publications.

Kastner, Curtis
Kansas State University
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