SAFEBAG

SAFEBAG

Globally, there has been an increase in the number of outbreaks of foodborne illness associated with fresh foodstuffs, and in particular ready-to-eat fruit and vegetables.

Beyond chlorine-based washing

Beyond chlorine-based washing

Chlorine is one of the most effective sanitizers to assure safety of fresh fruit and vegetables. However, there are environmental and health risks associated with its by-products. In response, an increasing number of consumers are demanding products which are free from harmful chemicals.

New disinfection method

New disinfection method

The SAFE-BAG project will develop a new in-pack decontamination system for fresh-cut produce. Previous research indicates that non-thermal atmospheric plasma can be used for decontamination of food contact surfaces.

The Project

The SAFE-BAG project aims at developing a novel continuous in-pack decontamination system for fresh produce, that is in line with market trends and consumer demands to move away from the use of methods such as chlorine washing. SAFE-BAG will deliver an alternative which is free from harmful chemicals, resulting in products that are safer for human health and indeed the environment.

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The Background

Globally, there has been an increase in the number of outbreaks of foodborne illness associated with ready-to-eat fruit and vegetables. The quality and safety of these products is of paramount importance for protecting the health and safety of EU consumers, especially in view of the growth in the convenience sector, which has seen a marked increase in the consumption of bagged ready-to-eat lettuce, and other fruit and vegetable products.

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The Solution

The SAFE-BAG project will build upon existing research indicating that in-pack non-thermal plasma (NTP) can significantly reduce the microbial load of fresh produce and will optimise the technology for the development of a prototype. The performance of the prototype will be validated and the treated fresh-cut produce analysed to ensure its safety and to asses its quality and shelf-life.

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