Plant Antimicrobial Washes for Use on Organic Leafy Greens

Technology #ua13-041

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Researchers
Sadhana Ravishankar
Associate Professor, Animal and Comparative Biomedical Sciences
Managed By
Tod McCauley
Sr. Licensing Manager (520) 626-7916

Invention

Faculty at the University of Arizona are developing an antimicrobial wash solution for organic leafy greens by utilizing three plant essential oil formulations. The plant oils used for this invention are food compatible, natural and considered as generally safe. This technology is highly effective against antibiotic resistant salmonella enterica on organic leafy greens than current hydrogen peroxide or chlorine treatments being used. Inventors plan to test these antimicrobial on semi-commercial scare to determine if they are equally effective and plan to investigate combinations of the antimicrobials.

Background

Salmonella enterica has caused many foodborne illness outbreaks following the consumption of contaminated produce. To solve the issue chlorine or hydrogen peroxide are used as antimicrobial washes on fruit and vegetables. This procedure is harsh on produce and bad for human consumption. With more and more antibiotic resistance of foodborne pathogens, there has been a growing demand for alternative safe and natural antimicrobial washes for food products. Essential oils are known to exhibit antimicrobial properties. In order to discover new and natural washes for organic produce, inventors have experimented different formulations of the essential oils on dip inoculated Salmonella enterica leafy greens. Currently, there is no commercial or industrial product that utilizes these essential oils to act as an antimicrobial wash against Salmonella enterica on leafy greens.

Applications

  • Use of essential oils to prevent contamination and/or activation of pathogen on contaminated fresh leafy greens.
  • Companies that manufacture fruit and vegetable antimicrobial washes and companies that manufacture leafy greens should be interested in this invention.
  • Use as an organic antimicrobial wash for other vegetables.

Advantages

  • Compared to other washing procedures, this wash is that it utilizes all natural products to kill off S. enterica on leafy greens instead of the use of harsh chemicals.
  • The plant antimicrobial in this research are food compatible, natural and considered as safe for human consumption.
  • Currently there is no commercial or industrial product that utilizes these essential oils to act as an antimicrobial wash against Salmonella enterica on leafy greens.

Inventor

Sadhana Ravishankar

Contact

Tod McCauley

Licensing Manger, Tech Launch Arizona

todm@tla.arizona.edu

Refer to case number UA13-041