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Targeted control of pathogenic bacteria in fresh foods

A new collaborative project between Danish food companies and Danish research institutions called TOP SAFE will try to meet the challenge of bio-conservation during the processing of fresh food.

Manufacturers, consumers and authorities around the world are demanding new and better ways to minimise the risk of disease outbreaks caused by foodborne bacteria. Such outbreaks affect public health, but also the economic and climate costs associated with contaminated food call for competitive solutions.

Danish foods are known around the world for high quality and food safety. Nevertheless, Danish food companies also periodically feel that food security is under pressure. Therefore, a number of companies and research institutions have joined forces in a new large research project called TOP SAFE, which, with the help of bio-conservation solutions, will make Danish food even more safe.

The scam is to eliminate pathogenic bacteria in fresh foods by actively using microorganisms, which are the natural enemies of the bacteria.

“Both good and bad bacteria exists. If we can use the good microorganisms to get rid of the bad ones like Campylobacter and Salmonella, it will further cement Denmark’s leading position when it comes to the production and sale of high-quality foods,” explains Anne Elsser-Gravesen from ISI Food Protection ApS, Project Manager of TOP SAFE

Focus on processing

In close collaboration between the Danish research organisations ISI Food Protection, University of Copenhagen, SEGES and the Danish food companies Danish Crown, Danpo and Arla Foods, the team behind the project will try to develop targeted bio-conservation principles that can specifically address and attack the bacteria that cause the outbreaks.

“Targeted control of the pathogenic bacteria will result in a large number of savings in both health care and production and the obvious benefits of better food safety,“ says Anne Elsser-Gravesen

As well as strengthening food safety, Anne Elsser-Gravesen also believes bio-conservation can help reduce food waste and thus helps to protect the environment and reduce the climate impact.

Source: Ministry of Danish Environment and Food