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United States: Ozone anti-microbial intervention as an alternative to organic acids to treat microorganisms in the meat industry

Intern: Carolin Alondra Brito Santos, Food Science and Technology

Carolin did her internship at Texas Tech University (TTU).  She worked alongside Doctorate and Masters Program students in the Food Microbiology unit located in TTU’s Experimental Sciences Building.  She worked on research projects related to large food plants in the United States. Her single greatest  contribution related to the antimicrobial intervention with ozone.  Carolin performed trials with other interventions in order to discover the most advantageous processes for managing Salmonella and Shiga toxine, which produces Escherichia coli (STEC).

The ozone can oxidize and destroy certain microorganisms (bacteria, fungus, virus and parasites), resulting in changes in their DNA and in some cases even killing those undesirable microorganisms entirely. The meat industry seeks to eliminate the presence of genes from these pathogens in carcasses by using an ozone intervention process in addition to other existing interventions such as the application of water and lactic acid. Confirming the effectiveness of ozone application for disinfection at the food plants is a new advancement.  It helps provide solutions to companies by offering to effectively reduce the presence of bacteria and thereby reduce economic loss. The aim is to apply this new technology in Latin America for a greater efficiency and to help increase income in the food industry.

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