The Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA), gives the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) more authority to access when serious health effects are in food companies. It mandates frequent inspections of food-production facilities and gives the FDA authority to issue mandatory product recalls. The recalls are issued if the FDA determines a product is adulterated or misbranded, and there may be a serious threat to the consumer. It also charges the FDA with establishing science-based standards for conducting risk-based inspections .
Under the law, the FDA can charge food plants for the re-inspection of the facilities. Ozone, with strong anti-oxidant properties, kills pathogens like, Listeria, salmonella, campylobacter, botrytis, E.coli in seconds . Ozone reverts back to oxygen after disinfection, and does not leave harmful chemical traces on the foods. In this case, ozone is considered a more powerful and green alternative to chlorine. All of these properties make ozone an ideal candidate for preventative FSMA actions.
With all of the FSMA requirements, Ozone Solutions is proud to help you with ozone preventative solutions. An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.
Author: Reza Zahedi
. http://www.fda.gov/Food/GuidanceRegulation/FSMA/, accessed Feb. 2015.
. http://www.ozonesolutions.com/info/ozone-effects-on-pathogens .
During the coating and lamination, the practice is melting a resin like PE, LDPE, PET and making a hot film. Then the hot film is coated in a material such as paper, paperboard, foil or even a plastic film. After that, the coating composite passes through some rolls to be compresses.
High temperature for extrusion (around 600 degrees F) not only needs energy but it may cause odor and taste problems for the products contained in the packaging. In this case low temperature extrusion has been investigated by the coating companies.
Ozone as a strong low temperature oxidizer is the answer for this demand. The Ozone process provides enhanced adhesive bonding on plastics, metals and inorganic materials and is also excellent for improving coating process technology. Ozone will work at room temperature and will oxidize the outer surface of the plastics. Consequently the plastic sticks to the paper or foil and then goes for compression in the rolls. The following figures depicts this application.
Proper ozone integration in this process and considering safety issues for the people who work in these facilities is very important. Ozone Solutions, by having experts in the field, is capable of integrating and safe operation of these coating systems.
Author: Reza Zahedi
The fumonisins are environment toxins produced primarily by Fusarium verticillioides and Fusarium proliferatum. There are at least 28 different forms of fumonisins, most designated as A-series, B-series, C-series, and P-series. Fumonisin B1 is the most common and economically important form, followed by B2 and B3. Fumonisins can occur in crops but corn is the most commonly contaminated crop by Fumonisin.
Fumonisin-producing Fusarium fungi causes a disease in maize known as Fusarium ear rot. Because of the health risk the FDA has regulated Fumonisins for human food or livestock consuption. The following table shows FDA acceptable Fumonisin level for human consumption :
Mekenzie et al. have checked the effect of ozone on Fumonisin reduction. Their result revealed that most of the Fumonisin was eliminated in 15 second using gaseous ozone.
A good review of ozone application for mycotoxin removal has been presented by Silve et al. .
Ozone Solutions offers a service to treat corn per bushel. Also we are offering customized ozone systems based on the process/barn. Ozone Solutions also offers Fumonisin tests in its state of the art lab.
Author: Reza Zahedi
. http://www.fda.gov/Food/GuidanceRegulation/GuidanceDocumentsRegulatoryInformation/ChemicalContaminantsMetalsNaturalToxinsPesticides/ucm109231.htm, accessed Jan 2016.
. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/9350226, accessed Jan 2016.
. Otniel Freitas-Silva and Armando Venâncio, “Ozone applications to prevent and degrade mycotoxins: a review”, Drug Metabolism Reviews, Volume 42, Issue 4, 2010.
Advantage of Ozone for Date Disinfection
The Date is disinfected by methyl bromide and phosphine to increase its shelf life time. These chemicals have some toxic side effects and their residue should be below some thresholds on the food stuff. These health concerns have increased use of ozone as an alternative safe and efficient organic disinfectant.
Ozone exposure of 10g/h for three hours is capable of reducing 53 percent in mold and yeast load on the date fruits. Bactria load also decreases 76 percent during the ozonation. Ozone does not leave a trace on the dates and there is no color and taste change in the date fruits .
Employing higher concentration of ozone will yield close to 100 percent microbial load reduction.
. Farajzadeh D, Qorbanpoor A, Rafati H, Isfeedvajani MS,” Reduction of date microbial load with ozone”, J Res Med Sci. 2013 Apr;18(4):330-4.
Fresh blueberries are commonly stored and transported by refrigeration in controlled atmospheres to protect shelf life for long periods of storage. Proper storage for blueberries is 0oC and relative humidity of 90-95 percent can provide 10-18 days of shelf life. Ozone gas not only can increase the shelf life of the blueberries but it can decreases weight loss and firmness loss of the blueberries. Meyer et al. found that blueberries stored under O3 blueberries show less weight loss and less loss of firmness (at 12°C after 10 days) when compared to the other traditional treatments .
Ozone also reduces 5.6 log Salmonella and 4.5 Log of E. coli O157:H7 by washing the blueberries.
. J. Bachmann and R. Earles, Postharvest Handling of Fruits and Veget abl es , ATTRA, 2000.
. http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ijfs/2015/164143/, accessed Nov 2015.
. Katherine L. Bialka, “DECONTAMINATION OF BERRIES WITH OZONE AND PULSED UV-LIGHT”, PhD thesis, Department of Agricultural and Biological Engineering
, The Pennsylvania State University, 2007.
Ozone application in the restaurants
Ozone because of its strong oxidation capability and its green nature is an ideal disinfectant for the restaurants. Ozonated water is an organic strong anti-microbial water which kills the microbes in seconds . The use of ozonated water will prevent microbial outbreak like current E.coli outbreak in Chipotle . Ozone as an organic disinfectant does not change color and taste of the fruits, vegetables, and meats . Ozonated water in the restaurant can be used for surface sanitation, disinfecting cooking wares, washing sinks with very small off gassing of ozone. This will help to remove the smell in the restaurant environment and disinfect the air. Deodorizing the air is another advantage of using ozone in the restaurants.
Ozone Solutions has recently developed a specific product for the restaurants, this unit is able to generate more than 1 ppm of ozone at diverse flow rates(1-10 gpm). Please call us for more detail and pricing. Let’s move forward for sustainable restaurants!
. http://www.ozonesolutions.com/info/e-coli-0157-h7-reduction-with-ozone, accessed on Nov. 2015.
. http://www.reuters.com/article/2015/11/05/us-chipotle-mexican-ecoli-idUSKCN0ST2JB20151105, accessed on Nov. 2015.
. Gholamreza Zahedi, Russel Hariss, “Efficacy test of ozone in an industrial beef harvesting plant”, International Ozone Association Proceedings of the Pan American Group Regional Conference, Dallas, TX, September 19-23, 2015.
Ozone in Onion Processes
Ozone kills microorganisms which can cause mold. So using ozone in onion storage room will prevent molds on onions and will increase onion shelf life. Ozone also prevents surface discoloration in onions.Another interesting advantage of using ozone in onion storage is decrease in onion weight loss. Ozone treated onions have less weight loss compared to untreated onions . Ozone also kills Asperigillus Niger which Causes Black Rot Disease in Onions .
In the following, an installation of Ozone Solutions in Washington State has been presented. The facility is 120 ft wide and 350-ft long and has 2 bays.
Ozone Solutions Installation at Ventco of Kennerwick, WA
. horttech.ashspublications.org/content/10/3/608.full.pdf , accessed Oct. 2015.
U.S. watermelon production in 2012 totaled more than 3.9 billion pounds. The value of fresh market watermelons in 2012 is $520.8 million . Most of the watermelons harvested in the United States are sold as fresh produce. The fruit should be consumed within two or three weeks of harvest.
Watermelons produce low levels of ethylene, but exposure of fruit to as little as 5ppm ethylene causes softening, rind thinning, flesh color fading, and over ripening. Honeydew and Persian melons are moderate producers with high sensitivity to ethylene. Cantaloupes are high ethylene producers but have moderate sensitivity. Effects of ethylene are loss of firmness, yellowing and an increase in volatiles.
Long distance shipment of melons benefits from controlled atmosphere storage with high carbon dioxide which retards decay development, color change and softening.
Ozone quickly can destroy ethylene and keep the melons in a good condition.
For the water melon cutting process, ozone can be used for disinfecting the knives and shells and at the same time ozone will increase the shelf life of sliced watermelons.
The following is the process for using ozone in melon slicing:
Watermelon → Selecting → Washing by water → Peeling → Cutting → Putting on polystyrene trays → Preliminary wrapping by polyethylene or polyvinyl chloride → Ozone blowing into the package containing the fresh-cut → Complete wrapping by polyethylene or polyvinyl chloride → Storing at 4o C → Watermelon fresh-cut for consumption
It can be noted that ozone blowing into the package containing watermelon fresh-cut decreases the number of microbial cells in the product. The longer the treatment time, the lower the number of bacteria, yeasts and molds in the product. In addition, during the storage, by using ozone, the fresh cut melons can last for an additional 7 days .
. http://www.agmrc.org/commodities__products/vegetables/watermelon, accessed August 2015.
. Le Van Viet Man, Tran Quoc Huy, STUDY ON PROLONGATION OF WATERMELON FRESH-CUT SHELFLIFE BY OZONE TREATMENT, Science & Technology Development, Vol 11, No.09 – 2008 .
U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) research has shown that fumigating honeycombs with ozone gas can eliminate pests and pathogens that threaten honey bee health and productivity. Now, ozone fumigation may also help reduce pesticide levels in honeycombs .
The study demonstrated that fumigating honeycombs with ozone gas at concentrations of 215 to 430 ppm kills all life stages of the greater wax moth. The kill also depended on the ozone exposure length.
Ozone also destroys spores of the chalkbrood fungus after 24 to 36 hours of exposure using 1,500 ppm. Another honeybee pathogen, the American foulbrood bacterium, required substantially longer exposure times and an ozone concentration twice as high. Studies also show that ozone treatments also degraded the pesticides in honeycombs .
Ozone Solution is proud to provide fumigation chambers for honey Comb disinfection.
. http://www.ars.usda.gov/is/pr/2014/140313.htm, accessed August 2015.
. http://todayscience.org/AS/v1-1/AS.2291-4471.2013.0101001.pdf, accessed August 2015.
Legionella causes Legionellosis or Legionnaires disease. Most notably L. pneumophilia. Legionella species are the causative agents of the human Legionnaires disease and the lesser form, Pontiac fever. Legionella transmission is via aerosols by the inhalation of mist droplets containing the bacteria. Common sources include cooling towers, domestic hot-water systems, and fountains. Natural sources of Legionella include freshwater ponds and creeks. Outbreaks of Legionnaires disease have occurred in or near large building complexes such as hotels, hospitals, offices, and factories.
Initial symptoms are flu-like, including fever, chills, and a dry cough. Advanced stages of the disease cause diarrhea and nausea. Legionnaires disease can be very serious and can cause death in up to 5% to 30% of cases.
The biofilm formed by Legionella has been observed in PVC, stainless steel, rubber, wood, and copper. The biofilm formation can especially be found on the surface of water pipes, tower basins, and heat exchangers. Ozone successfully removes Legionella. It has been found that at an Ozone concentration of about 0.3mg/liter, a 4–5 log10 reduction in the number of organisms is achieved within 20 minutes . Ozone not only removes Legionella, but it also helps to lower corrosion in tubing materials and reduces scale level .
It is recommended to keep the residual of disinfectants, so when Ozone is used, a trace of a second disinfectant, like Monochloramine, is needed. Ozone instantaneously inactivates Legionella.
. Edelstein PH et al. (1982). Efficacy of ozone in eradication of Legionella pneumophila from
hospital plumbing fixtures. Applied and Environmental Microbiology , 44:1330–1334.
. http://www.ozonesolutions.com/info/using-ozone-in-cooling-towers, accesses July 2015.