Aggregative Soil Sampling Using Boot Covers Compared to Soil Grabs From Commercial Romaine Fields Shows Similar Indicator Organism and Microbial Community Recoveries

Highlights Abstract Aggregative boot cover sampling may be a more representative, practical, and powerful method for preharvest produce soil testing than grab sampling because boot covers aggregate soil from larger areas. Our study tests if boot cover sampling results reflect quality and safety indicator organisms and community diversity of grab sampling. We collected soil samples […]

Modeling preharvest Cyclospora cayetanensis sampling and testing for various water and produce sampling plans

Highlights Abstract As of August 2023, the two U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) official detection methods for C. cayetanensis are outlined in the FDA Bacteriological Analytical Manual (BAM) Chapters 19b (produce testing) and 19c (agricultural water testing). These newly developed detection methods have been shown to not always detect contamination when present at low levels. Yet, […]

Spectral kernel sorting based on high-risk visual features associated with mycotoxin contamination reduces aflatoxin and fumonisin contamination in maize from Ghana

Highlights Abstract Rapid single kernel analysis could enable physical sorting to remove mycotoxins from bulk grains. The purpose of this study was to use visual characteristics previously associated with aflatoxin and fumonisin contamination of maize kernels to calibrate a multi-spectral sorter and then sort mycotoxin contaminated lots. A total of 76 corn samples were collected from poultry farmers in the Dorma-Ahenkro area, Ghana. Paired […]

Testing the potential of distilling as an alternative use for DON-contaminated wheat

A five month project funded by Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education (SARE): The goal of this project is to provide guidance to farmers, millers, and distillers about whether and at what levels DON contaminated grain can be safely used in distillation, thus impacting farmer, miller, and distiller decision-making in selling and using these grains. We […]

Flexible risk process models can be used to quantify residual risks and the impact of interventions on residual risks

A project funded by Center for Produce Safety (CPS). Renewable for up to three years. The produce industry needs a model to (i) identify the most important risks in a supply chain and (ii) identify which practices and control strategies appropriately reduce risks of contamination events that could lead to product recalls and illness outbreaks. […]

Efficacy of electron beam irradiation in reduction of mycotoxin-producing fungi, aflatoxin, and fumonisin, in naturally contaminated maize slurry

Highlights Abstract Maize is a staple food in Kenya. However, maize is prone to fungal infestation, which may result in production of harmful aflatoxins and fumonisins. Electron beam (eBeam) food processing is a proven post-harvest technology, but published literature is rare on the ability of eBeam to reduce mycotoxins in naturally contaminated maize samples. This study evaluated the efficacy of […]

A Validated Preharvest Sampling Simulation Shows that Sampling Plans with a Larger Number of Randomly Located Samples Perform Better than Typical Sampling Plans in Detecting Representative Point-Source and Widespread Hazards in Leafy Green Fields

Abstract Commercial leafy greens customers often require a negative preharvest pathogen test, typically by compositing 60 produce sample grabs of 150 to 375 g total mass from lots of various acreages. This study developed a preharvest sampling Monte Carlo simulation, validated it against literature and experimental trials, and used it to suggest improvements to sampling […]

Testing for Enterococcus faceium reduction during corn wet milling dry product production

A 10-week project funded by CRA Corn Refiners Association: The hypothesis tested in this project is that pilot-scale adaptations of industrially relevant unit operations of steeping, peroxide treatment, and drying, reduce counts of the indicator organism Enterococcus faecium in inoculated challenge studies. The specific objectives to test this hypothesis are:

Microplasma-based Far-UVC light decontamination approaches for improving the safety of ready-to-eat meat products

Our group will collaborate with PI (Yi-Cheng Wang) on a two-year project funded by USDA NIFA The long-term goal of this project is to develop a revolutionary, yet inexpensive and easy-to-use, decontamination technique, whereby retailers and other stakeholders can readily minimize cross-contamination and improve food safety. This will ultimately benefit the American people by increasing […]